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Watch the Panel Session “Sky Parks in the Public Realm – Elevating Green Ways and Urban Connectivity” with Dr. Maureen Connelly, Sadhu Aufochs Johnston, Randy Sharp, and Dr. Tan Puay Yok from Our Virtual Summit 2013

on January 7, 2015 at 2:30 pm under

In anticipation of’s spectacular 2015 Virtual Summit on April 6 through May 31 – and in order to familiarize you with the event – we are now making the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 videos publicly available on our GreenroofsTV channel on YouTube to all free of charge.

Today we have the pleasure to air the Panel Session “Sky Parks in the Public Realm – Elevating Green Ways and Urban Connectivity” with Dr. Maureen Connelly, Sadhu Aufochs Johnston, Randy Sharp, and Dr. Tan Puay Yok.  How can we captivate the use of under-utilized area of rooftops and explore our city in elevated plan and section for the creation of new amenities space and vibrant public places, and for bridges as pedestrian and cycle transportation routes, and even for food security opportunities?

How can an exploration of Sky-Gardens and elevated green ways support Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Plan – and vice-versa? The City of Singapore, through experience and precedents, can provide a global context to advance the vision.


Dr. Maureen Connelly of the Centre for Architectural Ecology, British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) School of Construction and the Environment leads this panel with Deputy City of Vancouver Manager Sadhu Johnston and Randy Sharp of Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architecture in Vancouver, B.C. Canada with Tan Puay Yok of the Department of Architecture of the National University of Singapore in Singapore.

Here’s more about the speakers:

VS2013 Sky Parks Panel - Click for more info!

Maureen Connelly, MAIBC, PhD: Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Dr. Maureen Connelly, MAIBC is Director, Faculty, at the Centre for Architectural Ecology, British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) School of Construction and the Environment. Combining a science background with a professional affiliation as an architect, Maureen developed the vision, oversaw the construction and the instrumentation of the BCIT green roof research facility in 2002. Her initial research focused on the architectural and planning impact of green roofs, which led to the Phase 1 research on stormwater and thermal performance. Maureen developed the first credited course on green roofs in Canada.

Current research focus is on the quantification of the acoustical capacity for green roofs and walls to reduce sound transmission through buildings reduce noise build up in urban areas and enhance personal and shared soundscapes. She continues to direct the strategic research and planning process at the BCIT Centre for Architectural Ecology. Maureen received the BCIT Applied Research Award for outstanding contribution to the advancement of knowledge, and of economic and societal well-being through the application and implementation of new technology and most recently accepted the Canadian Institute of Energy 2010 Research and Development award on behalf of the Centre.

Sadhu Aufochs Johnston: Vancouver, B.C., Canada. As Deputy City Manager, Sadhu contributes to the overall management of the City of Vancouver. Sadhu Johnston oversees the environmental and emergency management areas within the City Manager’s Office including oversight of the implementation of the Greenest City Action Plan, including programs such as curbside organics collection; public bike share implementation; district energy strategy development; and electric vehicle station deployment, among other areas.

Sadhu also has oversight of resilient city initiatives such as the city’s earthquake plan, the city’s heavy urban search and rescue team and the city’s climate adaptation strategy development and implementation. Sadhu is a founder and co-chair of the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), a network of over 120 municipal staff focused on greening their cities, representing over 50 million urban dwellers in North America. Sadhu is also chair of the executive committee of the STAR Community, which helps cities and counties achieve meaningful sustainability through the first national framework for local community efforts and tools that measure progress.

Prior to moving to Vancouver, Sadhu served as Mayor Richard M. Daley’s Chief Environmental Officer responsible for the City of Chicago environmental initiatives and was involved in the development and implementation of the Chicago Climate Action Plan; city’s blue cart recycling system; creation and oversight of a green jobs strategy for Chicago; and oversight of programs to engage Chicago’s businesses and residents such as Earth Hour, Green Hotels, the Green Office Challenge, and the GreenWorks Awards.

Sadhu also served as the Commissioner of the City of Chicago’s Department of Environment (DOE). Prior to working for the City of Chicago, Sadhu served as the Executive Director of the Cleveland Green Building Coalition.

Randy Sharp, BLA, BCSLA, FCSLA, ASLA, GRP: Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Randy Sharp is the co-founder and principal of Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architecture. Randy launched his career in 1977 with his involvement in the redesign of Granville Island, respected as one of the most successful examples of civic space in North America, and founded Sharp & Diamond shortly after. Focused on improving the urban environment and making sustainable methods visible, Randy authored Ecological Based Site Development: A Regional Guide to Design, Construction and Maintenance, commissioned by Metro Vancouver, and the WaterWise Landscape Guidelines for the City of Vancouver.

Randy’s interest in green roofs, living walls, and rain gardens has kept him as a leader and active participant in international conferences and a member of the Canada, Cascadia, and US Green Building Councils. Randy is a pioneer in ecological design in Vancouver and is still as passionate about making the city as beautiful today as he was over 35 years ago.

Tan Puay Yok, PhD: Singapore. Dr. Tan Puay Yok is an Associate Professor in the Department of Architecture of the National University of Singapore, where he contributes to the Masters programs in landscape architecture and integrated sustainable design. His teaching and research are centered around the policies, practices and management of greenery and ecology in the context of a high density and compact city like Singapore.

Prior to joining the academia, Puay Yok spent a number of years in of the National Parks Board, which is the national custodian of urban greenery and nature reserves of Singapore. He contributed in various capacities, including the management of the living collection of the Singapore Botanic Gardens and management of research programs, including that of its Centre for Urban Greenery and Ecology (CUBE). He has been actively involved in research, promotional efforts and policy formulation in the highrise greening of Singapore (known as Skyrise Greening locally since the commencement of active promotion in the early 2000s). Since then, he has contributed to 19 publications in this area, including the first book on plant selection for green roofs in the tropics, development of the first green roof and green wall research demonstration projects in Singapore, development of a monetary incentive scheme on green roof implementation, and provided input on various related policies.” ~ VS2013

Watch “Sky Parks in the Public Realm – Elevating Green Ways and Urban Connectivity” with Dr. Maureen Connelly, Sadhu Aufochs Johnston, Randy Sharp, and Dr. Tan Puay Yok below or see it specifically on its own channel, the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013:

Our second foray in the world of virtual conferences, the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013: Connecting the Planet + Living Architecture, was very successful at bringing together people from around the world to learn, discuss, and network in our field of living architecture.  This time partnering with the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN), between and WGIN we produced 36 videos involving 59 esteemed international speakers, specifically: 22 Individual Presenters, including 5 Keynotes; 5 Panel Sessions; and 9 Collaborative Presentations.

Watch these other VS2013 videos released so far:

Skyrise Ag: 5 Ways to Local Food Production Collaborative Video with Helen Cameron, Mohamed Hage, George Irwin, Ben Flanner and Alan Joaquin

Building-Integrated Vegetation: Redefining the Landscape or Chasing a Mirage? Opening Keynote Video by Aditya Ranade.

Mexico City’s Green Plan & Green Roofs – Areas Verdes de la Ciudad de Mexico & Azoteas Naturadas Video by Tanya Müller García.

The Marina Bay Sands Integrated Resort Video by Jaron Lubin.

Phyto Kinetic: Gardens in Movement Video by Marc Grañén.

Profiles of Women Business Leaders Greening the Way Collaborative Video with Barbara Deutsch; Lexie Hain and Marguerite Wells; Vanessa Keitges; and Joy Schmidt.

Green Walls and Maintenance – Needs, Opportunities and Best Practices Panel Session Video with Melissa Daniels, Christopher Lyon, Steven Peck, and James Sable.

Reflections of a Green Roof Campaigner and Visions of the Future Keynote Video by Dusty Gedge.

Urban Green in Australia Video by Matt Dillon.

2012 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design + Look into 2013 Collaborative Video with Linda S. Velazquez and Haven Kiers.

We hope you will join us in watching all of these as we present them!

Happy watching,

~ Linda V.

Also see these videos below in various languages on our exclusive Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 greenroofs.TV playlist:

Virtual Summit 2013 Highlights Video

Virtual Summit 2013 Trailer

VS2013 Linda Velazquez Promo

VS2013 Steven Peck Promo

VS2013 Julian Briz Promo – Spanish

VS2013 Matt Dillon Promo

VS2013 Manfred Koehler Promo – German

VS2013 Francois Lassalle Promo – French

VS2013 Eun-Heui Lee Promo – Korean

VS2013 Dorthe Romo Promo

VS2013 Wang Xianmin Promo – Mandarin Chinese

VS2013 Tanya Mueller Promo – Spanish