’s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: March 16, 2012

March 24, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Each week you can expect to learn What’s New here on through our “This Week in Review” video.  Here is the transcript from March 16th, 2012 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 March 16th, 2012 on GreenroofsTV.

Project of the Week

– Our project of the week is the Soleil @ Sinaran built in 2011 in Singapore.  These 36-story twin towers offer trendy professionals and young couples a 50 meter lap pool, two spa pavilions and eight entertainment pavilions – all are covered with extensive greenroofs.  They also have themed lounges and expansive sky gardens, with gymnasiums on the 20th floor of each tower.  The Soleil @ Sinaran has been awarded the BCA Green Mark Gold showing collaborative effort on its part to achieve sustainability in the built environment.

Elmich‘s greenroof system contributed substantially to the condominium’s green initiative and the 1,150 square meter greenroofs give the condos a resort-like ambiance while protecting and prolonging the waterproofing membrane on the rooftops and mitigating Singapore’s urban heat island effect.  The Elmich Greenroof is both lightweight and easy to install and was the ideal system for this project.  Elmich Greenroof is comprised of a VersiDrain ® 25P water retention and drainage layer, a geotextile filter layer and EnviroMix ® GR – a primarily inorganic soil-less lightweight planting media – and drought-tolerant plant species that require little or no maintenance.

– To learn more about the Soleil @ Sinaran,  click on our project of the week photo on our homepage (or on the above photo).

What’s New

Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 Video

– Watch our Greenroofs & Walls of the World Virtual Summit 2011 Episode 14: “The Work of ATVBrasil” by Joao Manuel Linck Feijo.

And find the rest of the videos in this series on our GreenroofsTV page and/or our greenroofsTV YouTube channel.

Advertiser Press Releases:

– Sika Limited is gearing up for its biggest Ecobuild exhibition yet as it prepares to demonstrate its “Solutions for a Sustainable Future”

Plant Connection Installs Living Wall That Helps Patients Heal.


–  Roofmeadow is now hiring a Project Field Specialist and a Landscape Designer in Philadelphia, PA.

Industry News

– The American federal government spends about $500 billion per year on services and products and about almost half of it is allocated to use services and buying products from small businesses in America.  Did you know that you can now search for opportunities to install and maintain “green roofs?”  If you have business in our industry, you might be asking yourself if the American federal government wanted your products or services.  There aren’t any charges to register or join up and the procedure to be part of it is pretty simple.

–  The Society of Environmentally Responsible Facilities (SERF) announced this week it’s launched into the Chicago market.  The East Lansing, Michigan-based green building certification organization brings affordable, streamlined and accessible environmental certification to the metro’s building owners, managers and developers.  As part of SERF’s Chicago launch, it is certifying two Chicago buildings: the office portion of the iconic 330 North Wabash building, and the Norcon Construction headquarters. Additionally, the organization established a Chicago office and appointed a regional director to oversee operations and outreach efforts for the region.

–  Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC) and The Horticultural Society of New York (HSNY) are pleased to announce the return of the popular Green Roof Boot Camp training series to New York City, from March 22nd to the 25th.  This event will include a tour of the NYC Parks & Recreation Department’s greenroof laboratory on Randall’s Island – a unique opportunity to examine over 25 different greenroof systems side-by-side.  The Parks Department’s 29,000 square foot greenroof is one of the only projects in the country to feature such a vast array of different systems.  You can read about this project in depth in the June 2011 Guest Feature Article by Artie Rollins and John Robilotti from NYC Parks and Recreation – see our Archives section.

Sky Gardens Blog

– Over at Sky Gardens, check out Linda’s latest post: Greenroofs & Walls of the World Virtual Summit 2011 Episode 14: The Work of ATVBrasil

Upcoming Events

-From March 3rd through April 22nd: is The Orchid Show – Patrick Blanc’s Vertical Gardens, in The New York Botanical Gardens, New York.

–  March 16th-25th: is the National Home Show, in Toronto, Canada.

–  March 20th: is Reinventing the Connecticut Garden Lecture, in Wilton, CT.

–  March 20th-21st: is Water & Environment 2012, CIWEM’s Annual Conference, in London, England.

–  March 20th-22nd: is Ecobuild 2012, in London, England.

–  Also March 20th-22nd: is the North/East Roofing Contractors Association’s Convention & Trade Show in Mashantucket, CT.

–  March 21st-25th: is the San Francisco Flower & Garden Show, in San Mateo, CA.

–  And March 23rd: is the Low Impact Development (LID) Expo 2012, in Sarasota, FL.

– “In the News“

–  A News Release from says “The American Horticultural Society has announced the winners of its annual book awards.”  Each year, the American Horticultural Society recognizes outstanding gardening books published in North America with its annual Book Award.  One of those is  “Small Green Roofs”  by our greenroof colleagues  Nigel Dunnett,  Dusty Gedge, John Little and  Edmund (ED) C. Snodgrass,  one of our contributing editors here on

Judge Greg Williams says its “a real trailblazer because it is the only in-depth guide to do-it-yourself green roofs, with plenty of case studies to build confidence and provide ideas for homeowners.”  Another judge, Fiona Gilsenen was impressed with the authors’ “approach, ethos and emphasis on using green roofs to encourage biodiversity, plus making it doable in a wide range of places.”  Congratulations, guys!  Check our greenroof bookstore for more info on this book and other greenroof and greenwall related books and magazines.

–  Jennifer Maloney of the Wall Street Journal talks about what’s “Fun for Kids, Good for the Waterways.”  She says New York City has enlisted trees, greenroofs, and massive tanks in its effort to reduce the untreated wastewater that overflows the city’s waterways each year and now it’s looking at schoolyards.  The city’s Department of Environmental Protection is developing a plan with the national non-profit group, Trust for Public Land, to build up to 10 green playgrounds that will capture the first inch of rain in every storm.

Five proposed schoolyards in Brooklyn and Queens are going through soil tests and if they are picked, will be transformed into public playgrounds with features like rain barrels, raised gardens, porous pavers and an under-layer of gravel that holds water during a storm then seep gradually into the ground.  A recent project, at P.S. 164 in Borough Park, Brooklyn, served as a pilot of sorts for the new initiative, because it includes some of the same rainwater-retention features, including a greenroof.  The first few new playgrounds should be open to the public by the end of next year.

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

– Send us your green articles, videos and images to and share your greenroof or greenwall info with the world!

– Make sure to keep up with everything by following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook, being a member of our network on LinkedIn, and subscribing to our greenroofsTV channel on YouTube!

– This has been This Week in Review for March 16th, 2012 on GreenroofsTV. I’m Anjuli Velázquez and I’ll see next week!

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

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

~ Linda V.

EcoBuild London (March 2011)

March 27, 2011 at 3:47 pm

From March 1-3, the London ExCeL hosted the world’s largest sustainable construction fair. It was the biggest EcoBuild yet, with over 50,000 visitors, over 1,300 suppliers, and more than 130 free seminar sessions featuring over 600 speakers.

Mate and verdant conversation with Roberto Ollett

I went with some colleagues for a day, and everyone agreed that the size of the show was nearly unmanageable, both in terms of time availability and mental/ physical endurance. Fortunately, my colleague Roberto Ollett of Eudaimon shared some of his newly acquired (yerba) mate with me, which is very high in caffeine.

Having won the Bristol City Council Public Art & Urban Regeneration commission, Eudaimon is radically reinterpreting the meaning of ‘public art’ by creating a site that will engage biodiversity, urban ecology and community involvement to a derelict part of Bristol. See website for more info. How perfect to share a social beverage (from South America) while discussing a collaboroative socio-ecological greening project!

Entering the massive ExCel to EcoBuild

Chelsea College's Speedo-Willow design

Once inside the trade show, some highlights for me included the launch of the 2011 Integrated Design Habitats competition, a Speedo-woven willow tunnel and herb wall from Chelsea College of Art & Design, and the presence of nature conservation organizations like the Wildlife Trust, Bug Life, Natural England.

On a personal note, the Swiss booth tickled my homesick taste-buds not only with Frey chocolates but also with Basler Läckerlis! Yummmm and happeeeeeeeee!

Some brand-new products were launched at EcoBuild 2011, like:
  • ICS Heat Pumps: the latest in DeLonghi’s inverter-driven heat pump technology
  • EMMVEE Photovoltaics: a new range of mono- and polycrystalline solar modules suitable for use in grid and off-grid applications
  • Wind Turbine: the Evance R9000 wind turbine was the fist and is currently the only 5kW wind turbine to receive full MCS accreditation, making it eligible for the UK Feed-In Tariff scheme
  • Photovoltaic energy roof system: IKO Solar launched two new systems: flexible strips (which are adhered to a roofing membrane), and a cylindrical system (which, when placed loosely on the roof, benefits from additional reflectance from the surface of the waterproofing).
  • Cyclepods: the new Streetpod secures bike frame and both wheels with a single lock.
  • Wood fibre insulation: new natural wood and hemp fibre insulation and construction solutions which provide both thermal and acoustic insulation
  • Energy efficient timber house: the new generation of such houses presented by Stommel Haus

Living architecture at EcoBuild

In terms of green roofs and living walls, such events provide tangible representation of how living architecture fits into the greater building sector. It’s humbling to realize what a small niche we fill. But hey, someone’s gotta do it!

At EcoBuild, all the component sectors of the living architecture industry (substrate, systems, ecology, etc.) held just a tiny sliver of the show. The companies and organizations in attendance were nicely represented, however. Blackdown Horticultural always put on a good show with their big and welcoming green spaces and impressive slopes. Alumasc and Optigreen had big booths and smart-looking business people ready to answer all questions. Shire Mineral had a little booth and many personable visitors. A number of living wall system providers were present, too, providing welcome towers and walls of greenery within the show.

Launch of the 2011 Integrated Design Habitats Competition (IDHC)

The IDHC “[puts] biodiversity at the heart of the built environment for the benefit of all” and celebrates design which accomplishes this. Organised by RESET and, the IHDC was devised to provide a forum for visionaries and innovators in order to design better, more sustainable habitats for everyone.

For this year, the IHDC 2011 was launched at Ecobuild’s Cityscape Stage. Last year’s winners presented their projects, along with 2011 Principal Sponsor (Victoria Business Improvement District) and co-organisers Dusty Gedge ( and Blanche Cameron (RESET). Gary Grant, Chair of Judges, spoke of the urgency to support biodiversity in the built environment.

The first competition ran in 2010, and awards were presented at the London World Green Roof Congress (September 2010). First prize went to Edge Hill Halls by Maria-Cristina Banceanu (1st year architecture student, University of Liverpool), above; second place went to MATRIPOLIS, by Paul Jones and David Dobereiner; and 3rd place went to the highly-commended Seed Catalogue by Susannah Hagan, Silvio Caputo, Mark Gaterell. To learn more about these projects, follow their respective links.

The Cityscape Stage was buzzing with interest

Registration for the 2011 IDHC is from 21 March to 31 July, with entry period from 1 May to 31 July. 1st prize is £2,000, 2nd prize is £1,000 and 3rd prize is £750.

Overall a great day, a massive show, several inspiring projects, numerous impressive technologies, and many great people! Many thanks to all who made EcoBuild a fabulous event and gathering!

~ Christine