Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 Episode 12: Wind. Water. Heat. Grow. Greenroofs. Panel Presentation

February 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Today we have the pleasure to air the panel presentation “Wind. Water. Heat. Grow. Greenroofs.” from our inaugural  2011 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit with Dr. Bill Retzlaff, David Aponte, Kevin Songer, and Joe Webb  on  greenroofs.tv and our  GreenroofsTV channel on YouTube.

A couple I’d known for years and the others were newer aquaintances, but  I was very excited to get these four professionals together – with their combined years of experience designing greenroofs in high-wind prone areas across the U.S., I knew we’d have a great discussion:

Aramis and I met Dr. Bill in 2006 at  Southern Illinois University Edwardsville  when I was invited to speak there through Kelly Luckett, AKA The Green Roof Guy – the president of Green Roof Blocks, a contributing editor of ours, and a good friend.  Kelly had been collaborating with Dr. Bill and his  G.R.E.E.N. program – a relationship of trialing  different aspects of greenroofing, including wind testing in June 2009, that has lasted for quite a few years now.  Although he hasn’t shared anything new in a few years,  Dr. Bill is also a contributing editor of Greenroofs.com; you can read about his work here.

I met architect Joe a few years ago at one of the Greening Rooftops for  Sustainable  Communities  Conferences when he talked about his emphasis on sustainability and presented on one of his greenroof projects,  Cheyenne I (251 Medical Center Blvd.).  In 2008 the building with its new greenroof came through Hurricane Ike, which  barreled  through Houston, unscathed.

We met fellow Latin, David, in Singapore in November, 2010 when we both spoke at the  International Skyrise Greenery Conference.  David talked about the similarities and differences between the climates of tropical Singapore and sub-tropical Puerto Rico.  Of course, his island is known for its prime location during hurricane season.

We still haven’t met Kevin in person (but hope to!), but were very impressed with his knowledge and experience with greenroofs in Jacksonville, Florida, having corresponded with him as well as read his blog posts and discussion board posts on native plants and wind trials.

This panel of experts say that greenroofs are impacted by wind, water and heat on an unrelenting basis.  Through wind trials and real hurricane survival stories in Houston, TX, Jacksonville, FL, Edwardsville, IL, and Puerto Rico, we have met those challenges and will discuss various projects’ responses and successes to Hurricanes Ike and (any others?). Drought, hot winds, and unseasonable 100 ° days can also quickly desiccate or kill greenroof plants.

Dr. Bill Retzlaff moderates discussing wind studies and plant trials for greenroofs at  Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.  Joe Webb talks about his project which endured 110 to 120 mph winds and 11″ of rain in 24 hours and shares water mapping and Living Building Challenge Water requirements.  Kevin Songer talks about the Outdoor Turbine Hurricane Simulator at the University of Florida, water conservation through ‘nature-based irrigation design,’ and the importance of biodiversity.  David Aponte speaks to his experience of engineering and designing greenroofs with the correct growing media and plants in hurricane-prone, sub-tropical Puerto Rico.

Bill Retzlaff, PhD, Co-Director of G.R.E.E.N., Chairman of the Research Committee of Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, Biological Sciences Professor and Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE), has conducted wind tunnel testing of green roof systems and contributed research data for the new green roof wind uplift standard.  In addition, a 16,000 sf green roof on the SIUE campus has just experienced a wind “event” with no uplift or damage.  Dr. Bill is also a contributing editor on Greenroofs.com (2006); he is the G.R.E.E.N. Editor and talks about the various trials at the SIUE Green Roof Research Center.

David L Aponte, MSCE, GRP has a Master’s of Engineering in Water Resource Engineering and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Environmental Engineering with several years experience in green roof design and the construction industry.  He is founder of PR Green Design, Inc. (PRGD) which is responsible for 80% of all the green roofs built in the island of Puerto Rico.  Projects range from small ecological roof to big scale intensive greening.   Since 1996, more than 150,000 sf of green roofs have been installed in Puerto Rico, but not all have survived the harsh environment of the tropics, especially in the extensive category.   As this new wave of green roof construction is reaching the Caribbean market many doubts and misconceptions have taken over local designers.   Should green roofs be designed here equally to those in northern climates?

Kevin Songer’s passion is restoring ‘volumetric green’ to the urban core, designing green roofs for MetroVerde.  MetroVerde’s green roof designs are structured for cyclone and hurricane impacted areas with native plants.  He holds a B.S. in Biology and a Juris Doctor in law (environmental and land use).  Kevin writes a daily green roof blog, Living Green Roofs.  He is a LEED BG+C and an ISA Certified Arborist & Municipal Specialist Arborist.  Follow @kevinsonger on twitter.

Joe Douglas Webb, AIA, is the principal of a small Houston based architecture and planning firm, Webb Architects, that specializes in commercial architecture, planning and city design projects.  Registered to practice architecture in 14 states, he is currently chair of Blueprint Houston, a past president of AIA Houston, a member of APA, USGBC, ULI and a NCARB Certificate holder.

After the presentation on the second day of the 2011 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit, Dr. Bill, David, Joe, and Kevin were available for a live Q & A session; the transcript was available archived for 30 days for participants of the Virtual Summit – unfortunately, we do not have it available now – one of the reasons to participate in this year’s Virtual Summit!

Note: Due to technical and other difficulties from the second party vendor who filmed our illustrious panel of four, this video did not have our standard 2011 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit branding initially, including the shots from Google Earth. We did, however, add it to the four affected panel presentations so that they would be effectively identified for posterity.

Enjoy!  Visit greenroofs.tv to see the Panel Session “Wind. Water. Heat. Grow. Greenroofs.” or click below:

Watch earlier videos on our exclusive Virtual Summit greenroofs.tv play list, or see the following Virtual Summit videos now available on our GreenroofsTV channel on YouTube:

Episode #11: “GreenRoofs in Australasia”  by  Matthew Dillon.
Episode #10: “The Vertical Garden – from Nature to Cities: An Interview with Patrick Blanc”  by  Patrick Blanc  and  me  with an introduction  by  Caroline Menetre.
Episode #9: “Sloped and Complex Green Roofs”  by  Richard Hayden.
Episode #8: “The Portland Ecoroof Program: A Cross-section of the Green Roof Movement in Portland, Oregon”  with  Tom Liptan,  Matt Burlin,  Amy Chomowicz,  Casey Cunningham, and  Alice Meyers.
Episode #7: “Constructing Gardens in the Sky”  by  Terry McGlade.
Episode# 6:  “Sky Meadows – Integrating People and Nature: Sustainable Green Roofs and Roof Gardens”  by  Dr. Nigel Dunnett.
Episode #5:  “Greenroofs & Walls for Educational & Social Equity in the Bronx”  Panel Session with  New York State Senator Gustavo Rivera,  Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.,  Robert Bieder,  Jon Beuttler,  Jess Dannhauser,  Javier Lopez  and  Steve Ritz.
Episode #4:  Keynote Address “CSR, Corporate Social Responsibility – The Who, What, Where, When and How” by  Ralph Velasquez.
Episode #3:  “CDA Leads the Way for Incorporating Green Roof Space in an Airport Environment”  by  Rosemarie Andolino.
Episode #2:  “2011 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design”  by  Haven Kiers  and  me.
Episode #1:  Opening Keynote Address “A New Place”  by  Charlie Miller.
VS2011 Opening Address  by Linda Velazquez (me!).

If you’re looking for an overview, make sure to see our  2011 Virtual Summit Highlights video (6:18) and our  2011 Virtual Summit Trailer (2:59).

Check back next week on GreenroofsTV for our 13th installment from the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011!

~ Linda V.

Order Your 2012 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Calendar Now!

December 13, 2011 at 5:11 pm

Well, folks, it’s that time of year again – the end of 2011 – when we start looking ahead and planning for the next!

What better way to stay up to date with greenroof and greenwall happenings around the world than with our brand new 2012 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ 12 Month Wall  Calendar?  Now in our fifth year of publishing, the Calendar combines two of our most popular destinations on Greenroofs.com: The Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database and Upcoming Events.

We’re very happy with the beautiful projects highlighted and hope you will be, too.  See the  Press Release here.

The 2012 Calendar has 78 events posted from across the globe and the cover features the luscious, top to bottom plant-enveloped Private Brussels Residence Vertical Garden & Greenroof by Patrick Blanc and Philippe Samyn.  Inside you’ll find full color glossy photos of projects from Honolulu, Long Island City, Chicago, Culpeper, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Atlanta, San Francisco, Delft, New York City, Beachwood, and Baltimore.

Special thanks go to our participating Sponsors of the 2012 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Calendar:    Barrett Company,  Green Living Technologies,  Green Roof Blocks,  GreenGrid, International Leak Detection,  LiveRoof, rooflite ®,  Roofmeadow,  Saul Nurseries,  Tremco,  Xero Flor America, and  ZinCo-USA.

And thanks to these Greenroofs.com’s Sponsors who weren’t featured this year –  American Hydrotech and  Conservation Technology –  but whose support also makes our website possible (along with all of you who are listed in  The Greenroof Directory)!

By the way, if you’d like to see all the previous years’ calendar projects, click here.

The  2012 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Calendar will make a perfect holiday gift for you, your staff,  and your green architecture like-minded friends and family, so order now in time for all the upcoming  holidays and the  new year.

Enjoy and happy greening!

~ Linda V.

The Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 Runs Through October 28!

October 6, 2011 at 10:05 am

Our vision of producing and sharing the virtual experience to our industry with our inaugural Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 was successful, and we couldn’t have done it without the great support of many people, in particular our main patron, Rare Earth Sponsor  TREMCO, along with Emerald Sponsor American Hydrotech.

Thanks again also to our Exhibitors  Grant Associates,  Green Living Technologies,  Green Roof Blocks,  GreenGrid Roofs,  Green Roof Plants,  ILD,  J-DRain, and  Roofmeadow – although the lifeblood of any conference is its speakers, the sponsors and exhibitors make it happen – none of this would have been possible without their financial support!

We are so proud to have put together the most amazing community of talented international speakers that you could have asked for – all leaders in their fields.  See the Speakers page and read all about them and their presentations.

Speaking of our Sponsors, Exhibitors, and Speakers, I’d like to stress that although the 2 live days have passed, the end of the Virtual Summit is on October 28 – if you missed out on September 27 & 28, you can still register until October 28!

You can’t beat the price of only $49 – or $25 for students/faculty/government professionals to access all 32 of our great panel sessions, interviews, presentations, and live Q & A commentary plus see the latest from manufacturer/supplier and organization/government exhibitors.

Visit all of our truly unique and innovative areas  within the virtual environment: the Rare Earth and On Demand Auditoriums, the Tremco Meeting Room, the Sky Terrace Networking Lounge, the Media Lounge, and the International, North American & Associates Pavilions at the Expo – did you know you can still chat with your fellow online attendees either in a public or private via video, audio, or text while logged in?

We’re putting together an awesome Highlights Video of our wonderful participants to give you a taste of what you are missing – look for it soon!  We hope to see you still in Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011!  Register  here.

Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!

~ Linda V.

Thank You to Our Sponsors and the Winner of the 2nd iPad2 at the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 is…

September 30, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Greenroofs.com’s inaugural  Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 was simply awesome!


Thank you to our Rare Earth Sponsor, TREMCO, for making it a reality, especially Ralph Velasquez!  Ralph, Executive Director of Sustainability with  Tremco,  was one of our Keynote Speakers and created a wonderful video presentation about CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility.

Also, we are very grateful to the support of our Emerald Sponsor, American Hydrotech.  Richard C. Hayden, RLA, ASLA, CLARB, is the Garden Roof Department Manager at  American Hydrotech and  shared some amazing projects and experience with “Sloped and Complex Green Roofs.”

As you already know the winner of our first iPad2 given away for early bird registrants was James Neville of Neville Environmental Services from Vancouver, B.C., Canada…

Without further ado, the winner of the second Apple iPad2 is…

Kira Udo, Student at Georgia Perimeter College!

Kira lives in Roswell, Georgia, just a stone’s throw from us here in Alpharetta. She is studying French with a concentration in Business Administration.  She’s interested in greenwalls and loves the work of Patrick Blanc.  Congratulations!

All of the content of the  Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 is available online through October 28, 2011. That includes the:

Tremco Meeting Room;
Tremco Booth in the International Pavilion;
American Hydrotech Booth in the North American Pavilion;
All of our other Exhibitor Booths in The Expo Pavilions including Grant Associates, Green Living Technologies, Green Roof Blocks, GreenGrid Roofs, Green Roof Plants, ILD, J-DRain, and Roofmeadow;
The Associates Booths at the Associate Pavilion;
The featured presentations and expert panel discussions with live Q & A records in the Rare Earth Auditorium;
and the rest of our stellar cast of  international  luminaries in the On Demand Auditorium.

It’s certainly not too late to register and see all of these amazing speakers and their interaction with our audience!  Registration will be open through October 28, 2011.

Here’s what one attendee had to say afterwards:

“Thank you for hosting the Virtual Summit 2011.  The event was extremely useful to me.  I’ve been working with green roofs here in Florida since 1995 and feel I learned more in two days than in most years since the time I first started growing plants way back, on a tin roof.

Most importantly though, the enthusiasm and success of others was so very important.

Here in Florida we lag behind the rest of the nation and the world.  But that is changing.  I know green roofs here will evolve just as beautifully and successfully as elsewhere.

Just seeing the inspirational work of others gave me the boost I needed.  Thank you and Aramis and the staff and speakers.  The Greenroofs.com Virtual Summit 2011 showed the world the importance of your outreach and informational organization.” ~ Kevin Songer

Thanks, Kevin!  If you  weren’t  able to join us live, we hope you will still sign up and enjoy the 32 presentations at your leisure through October 28!

See you at a physical conference somewhere in the world soon, and remember,

Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!

~ Linda V.