The Universities at Shady Grove (USG) Biomedical Sciences & Engineering Living Wall
Rockville, MD, USA
279 sf of Greenwall
Greenroofs.com Featured Project April 6, 2020
This indoor living wall at the Universities at Shady Grove’s newest academic building, its Biomedical Sciences & Engineering (BSE) facility, is a lovely gem of a project combining living architecture and art. Incorporating sculpture as part of the State of Maryland’s Percent for Art Program, the greenwall rhythmically accentuates the staircase and draws visitors to views of the exterior Piney Branch Water Garden.
Nestled within the cool greenery you’ll encounter sculpted aluminum panels which, according to the artist, “are abstractions based on natural patterns, observed phenomena, systems, materials, and structures that reference the scientific and engineering disciplines found within the BSE building and the regional biotech cluster.”
Excerpt from Greenroofs.com Project Profile:
The Universities at Shady Grove (or USG) is a regional campus of the University System of Maryland. USG offers more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs from nine Maryland public universities on one convenient campus.
USG’s new $175 million Biomedical Sciences and Engineering Building (or BSE) was opened in late 2019 offering programs in healthcare, biosciences, engineering, computational science disciplines, and a community dental clinic.
Designed by Cooper Carry and Lake Flato, the state-of-the-art facility was constructed with the certification goal of LEED Platinum. GSky Plant Systems designed and supplied a Versa Wall® Indoor Living Wall for the BSE Building.
The living wall installation was part of a biophilic plan to bring interior and exterior campus environments into the building atrium, reinforcing the visual connection between the indoor and outdoor environment. The BSE Living Wall measures 279 square feet and encompasses about 1,700 plants. Incorporating soft curves, the living wall showcases plants that are primarily shades of green complementing the interior of the building’s lobby area. Featuring patented vertical irrigation technology, the Versa Wall® system cuts water waste, prevents oversaturation, and boosts cost efficiency by automatically running a timed gravity-based irrigation cycle less than once a week.
A featured sculptural element composed of cast aluminum panels by Michael Singer Studios is integrated into the green wall which relates to their spectacular “Piney Branch Water Garden,” an outdoor public artwork to be completed in late spring. Connecting directly to an elevated campus boardwalk to traverse wetlands within the Piney Branch watershed, it features harvested rainwater.
Flowing over layers of underwater sculpted surfaces, the installation also includes night lighting. The BSE living wall is meant to almost appear as an extension of the east courtyard exterior environment flowing into the building.
Completely customizable with vibrant tropical plants, the GSky Versa Wall® enlivens decor, cleans the air, positively impacts the acoustic environment, and enhances productivity.
The Universities at Shady Grove Biomedical Sciences & Engineering Living Wall showcases sustainable design in a building that visually connects inside and outside beautifully.
Owner: University of Maryland
Location: Rockville, MD, USA
Building Program: Educational
Project Type: Interior Living Wall
System: Single-Source Provider
Size: 279 sq. ft.
Access: Accessible, Public
COOPER CARRY AND LAKE|FLATO
CONSTRUCTION MANAGEMENT, UNDER OVERSIGHT BY UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND CAPITAL PROJECTS, DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND CONSTRUCTION:
GILBANE BUILDING COMPANY
GSKY PLANT SYSTEMS
DEBBIE KOTALIC, GSKY PLANT SYSTEMS
PINEY BRANCH WATER GARDEN ARTIST / DESIGNER OF LIVING WALL SCULPTURE ART:
MICHAEL SINGER STUDIO
MEP ENGINEER FOR BSE BUILDING:
See the Project Profile
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