The Greenroofs.com 2012 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design

November 20, 2012 at 3:04 pm

2012 has been a whirlwind year for an amazing assortment of spectacular living architecture projects, and Haven Kiers and I have taken notice.  Did you see our  October 16, 2012 Greenroofs.com Announces the “2012 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design”  Press Release about it?

Here we go:

2012 marks the sixth year of our “Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design.”  Compiled by our Design Editor Haven Kiers, MLA, LEED AP, GRP and I, we have been proud to share the Top 10 List at the following conferences so far:

The 10th Annual CitiesAlive Green Roof & Wall Conference in Chicago, IL on October 17-20, 2012 and the  WGIN World Green Roof Conference 2012 (WGRC) in Hangzhou, China on October 22-26, 2012.

Next up is the International Green Conference 2012 in Bangalore, India on November 26-28, 2012, and, of course, we will be presenting it at our second  Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 on February 12 through March 13, 2013.  And for the Virtual Summit we will add a twist – a sneak peek into projects on our radar for the 2013 Top 10 List.  Haven and I always have a great time showing amazing examples of living architecture and will be available afterward for a live Q & A session – right from the convenience of your desktop, laptop or mobile device.

So, what’s it all about in 2012?

Starting with trends that we’ve seen in previous years that have either refused to go away or have sprung back with new vigor within the last year, we continue to see amazing integration of urban agriculture into new and existing structures, the use of vegetation to create soothing and healing gardens within hospital settings, and the design of schools that incorporate living architecture into their basic curriculum.  As always, we doff our caps to the fantastic skyscrapers that spiral up through the clouds and the client specific boutique greenroofs that defy categorization.

We are also excited to highlight new trends in green infrastructure.  This year, museums embraced their inner green goddesses and began highlighting living art both in and outside of their walls (and roofs).  Another rising trend features elevated walks.  Capturing everything from bridges, railways and promenades, this category features stunning expanses of elevated greenery.  And new this year, we’re incorporating two of the greenest cities in the world as categories in and of themselves, starting with tropical Singapore, a “herban” oasis that has started a green revolution on the island nation.

We culminate our Top 10 List of Hot Design Trends with a look at Chicago, an early trendsetter in city greening and now the definitive leader in living and green infrastructure and our #1 spot for 2012.

The Greenroofs.com Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design for 2012:

10) Client Specific “Boutique” Greenroofs
9) Green Museums: Art Living Inside & Out
8) Educational Facilities as Green Living Laboratories
7) Upward Spirals of Green
6) Hospitals Healing through Living Architecture
5) Gardens in the Clouds: Stacking & Stepping with Vegetation
4) Sky Farms on the (High)Rise
3) Singapore: A City within a Sky Garden
2) Green Elevated Walks: Bridges, Railways & Promenades
1) Chicago’s Trend-Setting Style: A “Miracle Mile High” City of Plants & Leadership

If you didn’t make it to one of the fabulous physical conferences listed above, please join us in January and February 2013 for our second annual Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 to experience first hand our fast-paced, lively, and presentation jam packed with awesome and sometimes incredible greenroof & greenwall photos of projects worldwide.

After the 2013 Virtual Summit, we will be happy, once again, to post our video of the 2012 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design on our Top 10 page and on  greenroofsTV, our video channel on YouTube.

See you in Bangalore or at the Virtual Summit in 2013!

Linda V.

Congrats to the Winners of the 2012 Green Roof and Wall Awards of Excellence

October 3, 2012 at 3:56 pm

The winners of the  Green Roofs for Healthy Cities  (GRHC) 2012 Green Roof and Wall Awards of Excellence represent some of the finest design teams in North America.  The Awards will be presented at the 10th  Annual CitiesAlive Green Roof & Wall Conference  – don’t miss this wonderful recognition event of innovators and leaders in our field!

“Green Roofs for Healthy Cities established the Green Roof Awards of Excellence in 2003 to recognize green roof projects which exhibit extraordinary leadership in integrated design and implementation. The awards also increase general awareness of green roof and green wall infrastructure and its associated public and private benefits, while recognizing the valuable contributions of green roof and green wall design professionals.”  ~  Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

Here are the 2012 winners:

Green Wall Award
Project: Corus Quay, Toronto, ON
Award Recipients: Diamond Schmitt Architects (Architect) & Nedlaw Living Walls (Green Wall Specialist)

Green Roof – Extensive Institutional
Project: Center for Urban Waters, Tacoma, WA
Award Recipient: Swift Company, LLC (Landscape Architect)

Green Roof – Extensive Industrial/Commercial
Project: Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market, Halifax, NS
Award Recipient: Lydon Lynch Architects (Architect)

Green Roof – Extensive Residential
Project: The Royal York Condominium, New York, NY
Award Recipient: Town and Gardens Ltd. (Design, Install, and Maintenance)

Green Roof – Intensive Industrial/Commercial
Project: The Ledge Kitchen & Drinks, Dorchester, MA
Award Recipient: Recover Green Roofs, LLC (Design and Install)

Green Roof – Intensive Institutional
Project: Chicago Botanic Garden – Rice Plant Conservation Science Center, Chicago, IL
Award Recipient: Chicago Botanic Garden (Client)

Green Roof – Intensive Residential Award
Project: One Cole, Toronto, ON
Award Recipient: Diamond Schmitt Architects (Architect)

Click here to read all about each GRHC award winner, with photos and background materials.

Visit www.citiesalive.org to learn more and register to learn about the future of green infrastructure and earn credits through LA CES, GBCI, AIA CES, APLD, RCI, and GRHC.

Congratulations to the winners, and  hopefully  I’ll see you in Chicago!

~ Linda V.

Chic Sustainability Watch: 2012 European Solar Decathlon, London Design Festival, Venice Architecture Biennale, Milan Design Week & Canada Blooms Garden Festival

September 28, 2012 at 1:28 pm

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve contributed to my half of the “Chic Sustainability Watch” team commitment (the other half being our wonderful Design Editor, Haven Kiers).  We had originally agreed to a bi-monthly column, which equated to each of us committing to writing about every two weeks…

Well, since it was my turn next, I’m the one who messed the bi-monthly thing up. But I’m baaak, so with real-life commitments and all, let’s see how it goes from now on!

Here are just some of the interesting and what I would call examples of true green  – not just eco-friendly –  living  (as in vegetation-embracing) architecture  entries that I’ve come across from these recent 2012 design events: The European Solar Decathlon,  London Design Festival,  Venice  Architecture Biennale, Milan Design Week and the Canada Blooms Garden Festival – none of them winners, but certainly noteworthy!

Several entries with greenroofs or greenwalls caught our attention, in particular from the:

European Solar Decathlon- September, 2012

–  Omotenashi House,  Chiba University

Via Inhabitat

What a beautiful home!  Held in Madrid, the sole European Solar Decathlon  2012 contestant entry from Japan by Chiba University architecture students, the  Omotenashi House  (Omotenashi means to “thoughtfully and sincerely conveying a feeling of consideration to those who you encounter”) provides a roomy and comfortable space envisioning a home with a lower carbon footprint.

Not only does it have solar panels, of course, but it also  sports a solar hot water heating system and grey water recycling, among other innovations…and take a  look at the hairy living walls above and living curtain of climbers below that not only provide shade but could provide vegetables as well!

Via Inhabitat

See a short video of the  Omotenashi House  at  the European Solar Decathlon  2012  homepage (in Spanish from the Japanese  Ambassador  to Spain). It also has urban food production with a rice paddy in its side garden.  If this hadn’t been a solar  decathlon, they certainly could have put the rice paddy on the roof!

It wouldn’t be the first time – see Episode #20: “The Current Situation and Future of Green Roofs in China”  by  Wang Xianmin,  an example from China from our inaugural  2011 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit  on  greenroofs.tv.

Via Inhabitat of 9.17.12 and Omotenashi House, and Inhabitat of  9.8.12, via The Japan Times.

– Para Eco-House,  Tongji University

The pre-fab Para Eco-House from  Tongji University architectural students in  China draws inspiration from Daoist principles.

Via Inhabitat

Yet passive and active forces combine with Western philosophies of independence and autonomy resulting in using materials such as highly renewable bamboo, solar panels, rainwater harvesting system, and a greenroof which could eventually provide a food source.

Via Inhabitat

Via Inhabitat of 9.7.12, via Muy Interesante  and Para Eco-House.

London Design Festival – September, 2012

Photo  © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat

Photo © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat

Kicked off on September 14, the London Design Festival offers some unique entries, one being this high eco-style  boat  house.

Photo  © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat

Photo © Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat

The INACHUS is a modern, functional, water-borne 2-story home from Sanitov Floating Homes that uses recycled materials, is powered by the sun and which happens to have a beautiful interior greenwall to cleanse the air.  Plans include the roof to be topped off with a greenroof, which would be quite a fun and responsible topper!

Via Inhabitat,  9.15.12.

Venice  Architecture Biennale – August, 2012

image  © designboom

This year’s Venice Architecture Biennale 2012 showcased a very interesting hanging system for growing plants indoors.  “Between Air” is a unique design by architects Jose Selgas and Lucia Cano of the firm  SelgasCano,  in collaboration with biologist Josep Selga and agronomist Juan Laureano, presented at the Spanish Pavilion here.

image  © designboom

The suspended hydroponic system of recycled plastic airpots is connected by these neat looking porous cylindrical forms, planted with a variety of succulents, herbs and even tree seedlings!  Indoor growing with a new technology and high style.  Watch a short video from the architects at designboom.

Via designboom of 8.29.12

Milan Design Week – April, 2012

Photo © Fabrikaat

FABRIKAAT was a Dutch exhibition included in the Milan Design Week last April. Students Micaela Nardella and Oana Tudose from the  Master of Interior Architecture and Retail Design program at the Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam  designed “Brick Biotope,” a set of modular brick nests with planted areas that can be  mortared into walls for birds.

Photo © Fabrikaat

What an awesome idea!  Easy, practical and I’m sure our bird friends will love it.

Via Inhabitat of  4.27.12

Canada Blooms Garden Festival – March, 2012

Photo © b sq. Design Studio

Constructed out of shipping pallets,  b sq. Design Studio Inc created the colorful and stunning “Plug and Play – the Pallet Garden” at the Canada Blooms Garden Festival  in Toronto  last March.

Photo © b sq. Design Studio

They used 105 pallets to create the dazzling and environmentally friendly display, which was meant to show we can use common materials at our disposal to create a thing of beauty, not to mention a thing of importance.  The recycled structures include an observation tower, planters, a water feature, and even wooden greenwalls planted with edibles.

Via Treehugger of 3.21.12

What a quirky set of some very cool projects designed and implemented in environments where just about anything goes – pure inspiration for the rest of us.

Hopefully we’ll see more of these  prototypes  built in the real world, not just a design festivals and competitions.  As far as the “Chic Sustainability Watch” goes, now it’s Haven’s turn!

~ Linda V.

Greenroofs.com Announces Strategic Partnership with the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) for the Second Greenroofs & Walls of the World Virtual Summit 2013!

September 20, 2012 at 2:02 pm

As you know if you are a regular visitor to the Internet, the way we interact has been drastically evolving in the last few years – from YouTube to social media to mobile, and if you’re not communicating online, you’re not  taking advantage and  growing as a community or business!

Along those lines, I’ve been promising you some big news regarding our second annual  Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013…here’s our latest Greenroofs.com Press Release:

Building on the success of our inaugural Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011, it is with great pleasure to announce our important new international partnership! Greenroofs.com, in association with the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN), is presenting:

The Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 – Connecting the Planet + Living Architecture: People, Projects & Design

“Last year’s groundbreaking Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 was an exciting first in our industry. Greenroofs.com is very proud of our state of the art online conference and we’re absolutely delighted to be partnering this year with WGIN, who will bring an even greater international audience to our world stage. 2013’s Virtual Summit alliance with WGIN allows us to optimize resources and promote leading edge information in a multi-lingual format.” ~ Linda S. Velazquez, Founder & Publisher, Greenroofs.com

“The World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) is delighted to be co-organizing the 2nd Virtual Summit, a cutting edge event, giving people worldwide the opportunity to learn about green roofs and walls as well as the opportunity to interact with leading trendsetters. You will without doubt find valuable information regarding green roofs and walls, from public policies, latest investigations to the most innovative projects. Be a part of the next great Virtual Summit!” ~ Tanya Mueller Garcia, Vice President, WGIN

People:
Creative thinkers, innovators, and trailblazers sharing organic green infrastructure ideas.
Friendly and knowledgeable exhibitors on hand live at the Expo.

Projects:
International icons of sustainability demonstrating early successes plus current & visionary case studies of excellence in design.

Design:
Proven standards of diverse green technologies plus dynamic, cutting edge, forward thinking schemes for greening the planet with building integrated greenery. Bioclimatic high design promoting biodiversity, biomimicry & chic sustainability.

When? January 9 through February 8, 2013.

What? World renown speakers and experts are just a click away during a whole month of lively speaker videos, Q & A sessions, panels, social networking, and virtual fun! We’re shining a virtual international spotlight on vegetative roofing & greenwalls integrating technology, multimedia, and the limitless global reach of the Internet.

Mission
To inform, share, and create a global social media experience for imagining, learning & networking via the power of the Internet.

In addition to raising the awareness of our market and industry, the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 will be an interactive platform for the interchange of ideas through a combination of keynote speakers, expert panel sessions, moderated chat sessions with live q & a, on-demand presentations, plus live video, audio and text chatting at the Sponsor Spaces, Social Media Areas, and the spectacular Expo Pavilions showcasing vendors and organizations from across the world.

Participants: Network and connect with your peers in real time, be inspired by our featured presenters, and learn about new companies, products, and projects on our live Expo dates.

Speakers: Share your project, sustainable vision, and experience on a global platform.

Exhibitors: Enhance your live trade show experience by spotlighting your company to an international audience of a thousand+, increase your exhibiting ROI’s, and reduce your carbon footprint in our eco-friendly environment.

Registration, Agenda, and Sponsor & Exhibitor Opportunity Information will be available soon.

Thank You Again to Our Rare Earth Sponsor: Tremco!

Event Platform Provider
In 2013 the Virtual Summit will be powered by INXPO.

“With its proven virtual event technology, we selected INXPO because of what they bring to the table for a successful digital event. Simplicity and power are the keys to an even richer online experience for our worldwide greenroof and wall community.” ~ Aramis M. Velazquez, CEO,  Greenroofs.com

Why Virtual?
As important as physical conferences are, the proliferation of international events makes it impossible to exhibit and attend them all in terms of time and money. At a fraction of the cost of a physical conference, you have an incredible opportunity to meet and greet awesome experts and practitioners in our field – without leaving your office. Every day, the new ubiquity of architectural greening gains new advocates, designers, and specifiers – be cutting edge by connecting and participating!

Stay tuned!

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About Greenroofs.com
Since 1999, Greenroofs.com has been the international greenroof industry’s resource and online information portal. We inform, promote and inspire through the interchange of ideas, projects, news, videos, events, research, people, company and community updates and marketing opportunities; exclusives include the Sky Gardens ~ where cool green meets lofty blue Blog, Contributing Editor Columns, and Guest Features. Greenroofs.com is the publisher of the International Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database, The Greenroof Directory, greenroofs.tv, Greenroofs of the World™ 12-Month Wall Calendar, the “This Week in Review” video, and the Sky Gardens ~ Greenroofs of the World™ WebTV series. Visit us at www.greenroofs.com.

About the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN)
The objectives of World Green Infrastructure Network are to be a globally-important motivator of the use of green infrastructure in cities; expand opportunities for member organizations to learn about green roof infrastructure science, technology, practice, economics and environmental and social benefits; promote education in green infrastructure benefits particularly at university levels and trade school levels, to provide skills for the green roof industry that can be expected to develop more widely; promote green infrastructure research and extension in soundly-based green infrastructure development; provide sound networking and conference study opportunities for member organizations; and to publicize the global environmental and cost-saving advantages of green infrastructure, especially those related to reducing climate change problems.

On October 22-26, 2012 the 3rd Annual WGIN World Green Roof Conference 2012 will be held in Hangzhou, China.

For more information:

Aramis M. Velázquez, CEO
Greenroofs.com, LLC.
(888) 477-1326
media@greenroofs.com

Manfred Köhler, President
World Green Infrastructure Network
koehler@hs-nb.de

We’re very excited about our new partnership, and Greenroofs.com and WGIN are putting together a spectacular line up of design and research professionals – we’ll keep you posted.

See our Greenroofs.com Announces Strategic Partnership with the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) for the Second Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013!  press release online, or download it as a PDF.

So make plans to expand your social horizons and extend your reach in 2013! Vanish distances and connect people by bringing your company, school or office into the virtual world.

Join us next year in January and February at the  The Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2013 – Connecting the Planet + Living Architecture: People, Projects & Design!

~ Linda V.