Project of the Week for March 3, 2014: Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Pollak Building

March 7, 2014 at 4:12 pm

Greenroofs.com Project of the Week: 3/3/14

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Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Pollak Building
Richmond, VA, USA

4,020 sq. ft Greenroof

VCUPollak1

Project Description & Details

Designed by VMDO Architects with Siteworks Studio, the walkout terrace located on the 5th floor of the Pollak Building Visual Arts Building at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) serves as a living classroom and provides for an opportunity for the students and faculty to congregate outside. The roof illustrates three different types of green roof planting strategies and depths with conventional (3-4”), meadow (6”), and plants native (12”) to Virginia – the first such green roof in the Commonwealth.

Installed by Capitol Greenroofs with greenroof consulting by Roofmeadow, the assembly utilizes a Carlisle Garden Roof with Optigreen drainage and growing media, provided by Conservation Technology, over an IRMA roof.  Students from the VCU School of the Arts Department of Interior Design spent a day planting the perennials, grasses and succulents. Corten steel planters were placed randomly in the planting areas. Galvanized grating leads to a new handicap accessible entrance and a 1,500 sf Pennsylvania bluestone patio flanks either side of the grating. VCU installed a 16 foot tall Eddy GT, 1 kW vertical axis wind turbine on the top of the southeast stair tower on the Pollak Building in the spring of 2012 which can be seen from the greenroof.

Year: 2011
Owner: Virginia Commonwealth University
Location: Richmond, VA, USA
Building Type: Educational
Type: Extensive & Intensive
System: Custom
Size: 4,020 sq.ft.
Grade: 1%
Access: Accessible, Private

VCUPollak2

Designers/Manufacturers of Record:

General Contractor: Prestige Construction
Installation: Capitol Greenroofs
Plant Installation: 15 Students from the VCU Arts Department of Interior Design
VCU Arts Liaison: Camden Whitehead, Associate Professor of Interior Design
Architect: VMDO Architects
Membrane Assembly: Carlisle Garden Roof
Landscape Architect: Siteworks Studio
Drainage & Growing Media: Optigreen
Optigreen Supplier: Conservation Technology
Greenroof Consulting: Roofmeadow

Click here to see more information about this project in The International Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database.

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Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!

~ Linda V.

Greenroofs.com”™s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: June 10, 17 & 24, 2011

June 27, 2011 at 4:05 pm

Each week you can expect to learn What’s New here on  Greenroofs.com through our “This Week in Review” video.  After a summer vacation, here’s the transcript from June 24 which also covers the weeks of June 17 & 10, 2011 from our daughter, Anjuli –  click on the photo below to see the video, or here.   Enjoy!

–   Hello, I’m Anjuli Velazquez and welcome to This Week in Review for this week, June 24th 2011, as well as for the past two weeks since I was gone for a little summer break, on  GreenroofsTV.

–  Projects of the Week

–   Our project of the week is the Hotel Ushuaïa Low-Tech Vertical Garden built in 2011 in Ibiza, Spain.  Situated in the Hotel Ushuaïa de Ibiza, the four panel eco.bin greenwall acts as a sound barrier between the open air disco, which is located in between the hotel’s central courtyard and the surrounding guest rooms.  The garden wall consists of rows of ceramic terra cotta containers whose circular openings are individually filled with growing medium and planted. Each interconnected planted ceramic has its own substrate and vegetation, and works together to create this sound-absorbent garden space.  This is the first such type of greenwall garden system in the world.  Also, the designers have selected a variety of native plants which can adapt and thrive in these Mediterranean conditions; and as you can see, they provide a multitude of colors during the year.

–   Our project of the week last week was the NYC Parks Five Borough Administrative Building built in 2007 in Randall’s Island, New York, New York. In response to Mayor Bloomberg’s visionary 2007 PlaNYC initiative, the Five Borough Technical Services division began a program of installing green roofs of various designs, realizing that they could contribute significantly to the city’s sustainability effort.  To date, the division, together with Parks’ Green Apple Corps and others, has installed 24 systems covering over 29,000 square feet of roof on the west wing of the building including Green Paks, GreenGrid, BioTrays, Bioroof, Xero Flor, and many custom designs. Five Borough’s is the only known green roof in the U.S. to feature such a vast array of distinct systems side-by-side, which vary by types of growing medium, depth of growing medium, and plant selection.  And there are also other non-traditional green roof systems here including a green wall, container systems, a “walkable” atrium system, as well as planters on top of parapet walls.  By the way, look for a very in-depth look at this roof as our Guest Feature Article coming very soon!

–   Our project of the week for June 10th was the Ruthven Garage built in 2010 in Tacoma, Washington.  In 2010, Jenny Ruthven was a horticulture student at Oregon State University, and after graduating found employment within the green roofing industry and wanted to design and install her own greenroof, and her parents’ garage was the perfect spot.  With the help of family and friends, they had to first add some additional structural support to the garage and replace the 29+ year old shingles. Then, they used a custom made blend of soil which ended up consisting of about 52% inorganic and 48% organic.  Inorganic was all pumice, with a bit of perlite thrown in. Half of the organic component was cedar grove compost, and the rest was coconut fiber, peat moss, mushroom compost, chicken compost, and steer compost. They planted 432 plants, with about 60 different species and varieties total.  Looking back now, Mom Sandra says that she  figured that she’d really like her greenroof, but had never   anticipated how much.

–   To learn more about the Ruthven Garage greenroof, type in project ID #1150 in our Projects Database, the NYC Parks Five Borough Administrative Building greenroof, project ID #787 and as always for our current project of the week, this week being the Hotel Ushüaia Low-Tech Vertical Garden, click on our project of the week photo on our homepage.  And, you can also always go to our Sky Gardens Blog and read Linda’s expanded post about our project of the week every week!

What’s New“

–  Advertiser Press Releases:

–  LiveRoof ® Adds an Architectural Specialist, Michael R. Selleck, in Chicago to Support Sales of the LiveRoof ® Hybrid Green Roof System.

–  Tremco Headquarters Completes Comprehensive Green Renovation, Becomes a Showcase of Sustainable Construction Technology.

Registration is now open in Ottawa, Canada – for a Green Living Technologies International (GLTi) Green Wall Seminar.

–  Skyland USA is pleased to announce the launch of a new rooflite ® certified growing media website.

–  Joblinks:

The University of Sheffield is looking for a Hydrologist or Urban Drainage Marie Curie More Experienced Researcher in Sheffield, United Kingdom.

–  You can go to  greenroofs.com/joblinks.htm more information on this job and other Green Roof Job postings.

–   Make sure to check out our latest Guest Feature Articles and Blog Posts:

–   Christine Thuring gives us her latest report on the 1st International Green Roof Students Conference in Sheffield, UK.

–   And Steven Peck fills us in on a Green Roofs for Healthy Cities’ 2011 CitiesAlive Conference update.

–   Over at the Sky Gardens Blog, catch up on all of Linda’s other posts about Chris Wark’s 2011 7-part Green Roof Energy Series is now available on PDF, and the Greenroofs.com’s “TWIR” on GreenroofsTV for June 3rd, 2011.

–  Industry News

–   Environmental Protection Commissioner Cas Holloway announced the 15 winners of Department of Environmental Protection’s 2011 Green Infrastructure Grant Program. Selected from a total of 52 applications, the 15 winners will share approximately $3.8 million of funds to build green infrastructure projects that will reduce combined sewer overflows and improve water quality in the New York Harbor.

–  Green Roofs for Healthy Cities announces co-host agreements with the City of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania Horticultural Society for its 9th Annual CitiesAlive Green Roof and Wall Conference November 30th – December 3rd, 2011.

–  The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on Architecture for Education (CAE) has selected 13 educational and cultural facilities for this year’s CAE Educational Facility Design Awards.

–   “Upcoming Events“

–   June 21st-25th: is the 2011 APGA Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

–   June 27th-29th: is the 48th International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) World Congress in Zurich, Switzerland.

–   And on June 29th-30th: is Greenbuild EXPO Exhibition & Conference of Sustainable Building in Manchester, United Kingdom.

–  For more Upcoming Events visit our homepage.

–   “In the News“

–   Julia Johnson of the Ottawa Citizen reports on “Old film treasure preserved in federal news archives building.”  Earlier this week, Library and Archives Canada unveiled its new $14.7-million preservation facility for nitrate film on the government’s Shirleys Bay campus.  The new building now houses 5,575 reels of nitrate film dating back to 1912.  Archivist and librarian of Canada, Daniel Caron says that the new facility was also designed to be environmentally friendly, including efficient mechanical systems, insulated walls and a greenroof.  And Mario Gasperetti, the archives’ manager of strategic accommodation adds that the greenroof helps with keeping the vault cool by reducing heat exchange and instead of using manicured grass on the roof, it is designed to look exactly like the meadow landscape surrounding the building.

–   Julie Young of the Richmond Times-Dispatch talks about “Burnt-out home goes from ashes to awesome.”  She says a few years ago, the 1920s row house on Grove Avenue was an “architectural corpse.  Its skeletal remains consisted of a disfigured facade, broken bones and devastating internal damage.”  Then along came Dr. Susan Miller and her husband Dr. Kenneth Kendler to the rescue.  In 2008, they signed on to breathe life back into this burnt down home.  Over the next two years, “The Phoenix” was reborn and filled with green eco-friendly sustainable features like their own greenroof, the 25 foot tall green wall located in the home between the dining room and great room, thirty photovoltaic  roof panels, solar panels, concrete countertops flecked with reclaimed glass and rocks their now-adult children collected as kids, and much more.  The living wall ecosystem was designed by Scotty Guinn Dilworth of SG Designs and installed by Capitol Greenroofs who also installed the roof-top garden.

–   Ted Kortan of NewsNet5.com announces “Tremco Incorporated headquarters dedicated in Beachwood.”  Tremco Incorporated, a building products and solutions company, and subsidiary of RPM International, dedicated its renovated 40-year-old corporate headquarters last week.  Tremco said the project has resulted in a “high performance” building that is substantially more efficient, cost effective, and sustainable than the previous headquarters, with features like their vegetated roof with almost 1,600 plants and the area’s first solar powered electric car charging station.  Joining with company officials at Tremco’s Green Road campus for the dedication were Ohio Governor John Kasich, U.S. Senator Rob Portman, U.S. Congresswoman Betty Sutton and Beachwood Mayor Merle Gorden.

–   Sandy Bauers of Philly.com says “A tiny step forward for green roofs in Philadelphia” includes “a cheerful puff of plant life atop a bus-stop shelter.”  Tiffany Ledesma Groll, the project’s coordinator said, “We basically see this project as an opportunity to inspire homeowners.  A lot of the green roofs that are really fabulous and gorgeous are on high-rises” – which most people never see.  She goes on to say, “We thought it would be fun to bring it down to eye level.”  Last week, workers from Roofmeadow, a Philadelphia green roofs company that did the installation pro bono, were busy topping the shelter with its “mini-oasis.”  They planted a fuzz of pink dianthus, multicolored portulaca, and sedum and Roofmeadow also has committed to maintaining the roof for its first two years.  Charlie Miller, president and founder of Roofmeadow, said the roof “will give people a sense of familiarity…how it contributes to the quality of life.”  His son, Ari, designed the installation so it could be replicated as a “kit” for other bus-stop roofs in the city.

–   To learn more about these stories and new ones posted daily, go to our  In the News or  newslinks section of our website.

–   Have something you think we should know about and post on our website?   You can send us your green articles, videos and images to  editor@greenroofs.com.

–   Stay up-to-date with what’s going on at  Greenroofs.com by subscribing to our  greenroofsTV channel on YouTube, following us on  Twitter, liking us on  Facebook and being a member of our network on  LinkedIn.

–   This has been This Week in Review for June 24th, 2011 as well as June 10th and 17th on GreenroofsTV.    I’m Anjuli Velazquez and I’ll see you next week!

*This week’s episode is sponsored by  The Greenroof Directory, brought to you by  Greenroofs.com.*

Did we miss something?   We’d love to hear from you!

~ Linda V.

Greenroofs.com’s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: April 29th, 2011

April 30, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Each week you can expect to learn What’s New here on  Greenroofs.com through our “This Week in Review” video.   Here’s the transcript for April 29, 2011 from our daughter,  Anjuli –  click on the photo below to see the video, or  here.   Enjoy!

–   Hello, I’m Anjuli Velazquez and welcome to This Week in Review for April 29th, 2011,  on  GreenroofsTV.

–  Project of the Week

– Our project of the week is the  U.S. Tax Court greenroof built in 2008 in Washington, D.C.  The D.C. area is well known for having some of the worst storm water control problems in America and the Federal Government along with the District Government authorities have recognized that greening its rooftops is the most practical and economical means of addressing this issue.  The United States Tax Court, one of a number of notable General Services Administration’s greening projects, was recently re-roofed with a Barrett Company 4 inch extensive “Greenroof-Roofscapes ®” assembly, adding to the growing federal green roof inventory within the Capitol District.  The green roof initiative is reducing the storm water runoff volume while providing the many other environmental contributions that living roofs are known to provide.  Cole Roofing was brought in as Barrett Company’s Greenroof-Roofscape ® installer, who then hired Greg Long of Capitol Greenroofs to oversee installation and maintain the roof.

– To learn more about the U.S. Tax Court greenroof, click on our project of the week photo on our  homepage.

–   “What’s New“

–  Chris Wark, our Energy Editor, wraps up his final installment of his 7-part “Cooler Than Cool Roofs: How Heat Doesn’t Move Through a Green Roof” Energy series. Make sure to read “The Secret and How To Use It.

–  Did you know you can watch YouTube videos, like our latest Sky Gardens ~ Greenroofs of the World episode, the Cook+Fox Architects Office, on your DirecTV?  Just click on the link on our homepage or go to the greenroofsTV page and follow the directions.

–  Our April 2011 e-Newsletter is out, so catch up on all of the greenroof and wall news from this past month.

–  Don’t forget: our 2011″Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!” Earth Day Photo Contest has been extended until today, so go to our  Facebook page, submit your photos and vote for your favorite until midnight tonight and the winner will be announced tomorrow!

–  Read Linda’s latest Sky Gardens Blog posts: “GPW: U.S. Tax Court“ and “Greenroofs.com’s “˜This Week in Review’ on GreenroofsTV: 4.22.11,” and Christine Thuring‘s “See the UK Green Roof Student Conference Programme & Register by 6th May 2011.”

–   “Upcoming Events“

–  April 29th-May 8th: is the WMG Water Harvesting Certification in Tucson, AZ.

–  May 2nd: is the 2nd Annual Massachusetts Sustainable Economy Conference in Boston, MA.

–  and May 4th-6th: is Greenbuilding – International Exhibition & Conference on Energy Efficiency & Sustainable Architecture in Verona, Italy. For more Upcoming Events visit our homepage.

–   “In the News“

–  Tanya Snyder of Streetsblog Capitol Hill Blog talks about “Philadelphia’s Battle Against Impervious Asphalt.”  She says, “In Philadelphia, your water bill used to be based only on your water consumption…now, your bill is a more accurate reflection of your water footprint, including the amount it costs the city to manage stormwater runoff from your property.”  Philadelphia is now the number-two city in the country for green roofs.  And they’re also implementing a multitude of public space improvements that are popular and desirable in urban cities for many other reasons besides stormwater management.

–  Kim North Shine of Metromode Media reports on “Metro Detroit’s Institutes of Greener Learning.”  The students of Lawrence Technological University in Southfield use its green roofs, rainwater collection systems, solar panels and other eco-minded facilities, like the Alfred A. Taubman Student Services Center, as living laboratories.  The student center was built with recyclable materials and has 120 geothermal wells that heat and cool the building as well as a 10,000 square foot green roof that controls and reduces water runoff.

–   To learn more about these stories and new ones posted daily, go to our  In the News or  newslinks section of our website.

–   Have something you think we should know about and post on our website?   You can send us your green articles, videos and images to  editor@greenroofs.com.

–   Stay up-to-date with what’s going on at  Greenroofs.com by subscribing to our  greenroofsTV channel on YouTube, following us on  Twitter, liking us on  Facebook and being a member of our network on  LinkedIn.

–   This has been This Week in Review for April 29th, 2011 on GreenroofsTV.  I’m Anjuli Velazquez and I’ll see you next week!

*This week’s episode is sponsored by  The Greenroof Directory, brought to you by  Greenroofs.com.*

Did we miss something?   We’d love to hear from you!

~ Linda V.

 

 

GPW: U.S. Tax Court

April 27, 2011 at 10:58 pm

Greenroofs.com Project of the Week: 4/25/11
U.S. Tax Court
Washington, DC, USA
5,500 sf. Greenroof

Year: 2008
Owner: U.S. General Services Administration
Location: Washington, DC, USA
Building Type: Municipal/Government
Type:  Extensive
System:
Single Source Provider
Size: 5,500 sq.ft.  
Slope: 1%
Access: Inaccessible, Private

Project Description & Details

The United States Tax Court, one of a number of notable General Services Administration’s greening projects, was recently reroofed with a Barrett Company extensive assembly, adding to the growing federal green roof inventory within the Capitol District.  The green roof initiative is reducing the storm water runoff volume while providing the many other environmental contributions that green roofs are known to provide including increased roofing longevity, carbon dioxide-oxygen exchange, reduced interior noise pollution and reduction of the urban heat-island effect.

The project actually has two wings with three green roofs totaling 5,500 sf of vegetated area: two green roofs on the north wing and one on the south wing.  Two succulent plugs per sf were planted including Sedum album; Sedum spurium ‘Fuldaglut’; Sedum kamtschaticum; Sedum sexangulare; Sedum reflexum ‘Blue Spruce’; Delosperma nubigenum, and Sedum rupestre “˜Angelina’.  An erosion control mat was placed on top of the extensive growing media.  Not publicly accessible, the U.S. Tax Court’s Greenroof-Roofscapes ® provides a visual delight to its high-rise neighbors.

Designers/Manufacturers of Record

Waterproofing & Greenroof System: Barrett Ram-Tough 250DM -“Greenroof-Roofscape ®” Extensive Green Roof
Architect: MTFA Architecture, Inc.
Waterproofing & Greenroof-Roofscape ® Installer: Cole Roofing Company, Inc.
Greenroof Installation Management & Maintenance: Greg Long, Capitol Greenroofs

Although the square footage for the vegetated area is 5,500 sf, Barrett Company provided a total area of 21,300 for the hot fluid applied roofing area.  Cole Roofing was brought in as Barrett Company’s Greenroof-Roofscape ® Installer.

Here are some photos of the December, 2008 installation:

As you can see from these photos a gravel bucket was hoisted to the roof and fall protection fencing was set up around the receiving area.  The growing medium was compacted using a 200 lbs. rolling drum, and 2″x10″ boards were used to screed it to ensure proper depth.  Then the growing medium was saturated and compacted to reduce wind erosion.  And finally, an erosion control mat completed the plantings.

Here’s what the roof looked like right after, in December 2008 and then the following season in late April and May, 2009:

Remember that planning in a busy downtown district can be tricky, but extremely important for all of the material material providers on a project.  Greg Long, seen below, says:

“Staging the materials is often the most difficult part of the project and minimizing the amount of times that you move material often determines whether a project will be profitable. “

It sounds like everyone is pleased with the way the project has fared.  Referring to Tim Barrett and Greg Long of Capitol Greenroofs, Bill Cole of Cole Roofing says:

“Greg and Tim have been great.  We hired Greg to oversee our men during the installation and then continue the maintenance.  He has done an excellent job.”

Did we miss something?  We’d love to hear from you!  Click  here to see more information about this project in  The International Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database.  See how you can submit yours  here.

Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!

~ Linda V.