Green Roofs for Healthy Cities Announces 11th Awards of Excellence Winners

October 4, 2013 at 12:43 pm

The 11th Awards of Excellence Winners Announced: Celebrating outstanding green roofs and walls across North America by Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC).

“GRHC is very pleased to celebrate this year’s Awards of Excellence winners for their outstanding contributions to the world of living architecture. Everyone involved with these projects should be proud of this recognition, as over 35 of North America’s most innovative new examples of living architecture were submitted, making for very tough competition.” ~ Steven Peck, Executive Director, GRHC


Selected to evoke the theme of CitiesAlive 2013, Securing Urban Resiliency with Living Architecture: Food – Water – Energy,” these are the 2013 AWARDS OF EXCELLENCE WINNERS:

Extensive Institutional Award
Project: Kauffman Performing Arts Center & District Garage, Kansas City, MO
Award Recipient: Jeffrey L. Bruce & Company
The green roof atop one of the most architecturally advanced arts centers in the U.S. beautifully complements the building, and is the largest stormwater detention facility in the State of Missouri.

Small-Scale Residential Award
Project: Skyhigh Residence, Fairfax, CA
Award Recipient: SYMBIOS eco-tecture
Built on a steep hillside that gives the inhabitants gorgeous views of the surrounding wildlands and nearby mountains, the Skyhigh Residence green roof offers a direct connection to the area’s ecosystem.

Exterior Green Wall Award
Project: Sam Cuddeback Assembly Wing, Drew School, San Francisco, CA
Award Recipient: ROMA Design Group
Besides being an extraordinary educational resource for the high school, this living wall brings a vibrant lushness to the public environment of the city.

Interior Green Wall Award
Project: Papadakis Integrated Science Building, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
Award Recipient: Diamond Schmitt Architects
This living wall, the largest on a U.S. university campus, invites a more full engagement with the university experience while cleaning the building’s air and reducing energy consumption.

Intensive Residential Award
Project: The Visionaire, New York City, NY
Award Recipient: MKM Landscape Architecture
The roof terrace at The Visionaire maximizes the productive capabilities of this certified LEED Platinum building, combining urban agriculture, stormwater retention, and impressive plant variety.

Intensive Institutional Award
Project: Vancouver Island University, Duncan, BC
Award Recipient: Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architecture
The green roofs at VIU successfully connect the university to both the ecosystem of the Cowichan Valley and the values and culture of local Cowichan Tribes.

Extensive Commercial/Industrial Award
Project: Ellis Creek Water Recycling Facility, Petaluma, CA
Award Recipient: SYMBIOS eco-tecture
Situated along the Petaluma River, this green roof helps the water recycling facility it sits on provide clean water for the community, while also demonstrating the sustainable aspects of building integrated vegetation.

Special Recognition Award
Project: Olive Street Residence, Winchester, MA
Award Recipient: Recover Green Roofs, LLC
Bringing green roofs to a suburban residential location where they frequently are not seen, the judges chose to recognize this project for the example it sets for lower density development across North America.

In addition to these projects being honored, three individuals have also been recognized for their outstanding contributions to the green roof and wall industry:

Research Award
Winner: Dr. Maureen Connelly, British Columbia Institute of Technology

President’s Corporate Award
Winner: Douglas York, Ewing Irrigation Products, Inc.

Civic Award
Winner: Scott Potter, Director, Nashville Metro Water Services

See each one from Green Roofs for Healthy Cities here.  For additional information, please contact Rebecca Black, Director of Business Development, GRHC at: or 416.535.2586.


Make sure to join the celebration to honor the GRHC winners and highlight these outstanding individuals and projects at CitiesAlive at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis on Friday, October 25, 2013 at the Awards of Excellence Luncheon.

Kudos to all!  See you there!

~ Linda V.’s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: August 24, 2012

August 25, 2012 at 10:03 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 August 24, 2012 from our daughter, Anjuli – click on the photo below to see the video, or here.  Enjoy!

– Hello, I’m Anjuli Velázquez and welcome to “This Week in Review” for August 24th, 2012 on GreenroofsTV.

Project of the Week

–  Our project of the week is the  ABN AMRO Plaza, 6th Floor Podium, built in 2005 in Chicago, Illinois.  ABN AMRO Plaza is a 1.4 million square foot, 29-floor commercial office building located in the West Loop area of Chicago and is certified LEED-EB Gold.  The green roof on the 6th floor was primarily built for the use of the ABN AMRO employees.  It was designed to be an occupied green roof with 50% planted area and 50% paver area with plantings which are a mix of trees, perennial plants, and annual flowers in planters of mixed heights.  Former Mayor Daley’s objective was to make Chicago America’s greenest city, and this building has contributed towards making Chicago a cleaner, healthier, more energy-efficient environment for its citizens.

This project has won numerous awards including the IIDA Design Award, Crain’s Real Estate Development of the Year and Midwest Construction Commercial Project of the year.  And, it also won the 2007 Green Roofs for Healthy Cities Awards of Excellence in the Intensive Industrial/Commercial category.  The “Greenroof-Roofscape ®” waterproofing assembly, supplied by Barrett Company, consists of 215 mils thick Barrett “Ram Tough 250″ rubberized asphalt membrane, polyester reinforcement, SBS protection course, 60 psi extruded polystyrene insulation, and a root barrier.

– To learn more about the ABN AMRO Plaza, 6th Floor Podium,  click on our project of the week photo on our homepage (or on the above photos).

What’s New

– Welcome to our new sponsor, Vegetal i.D.!  They are one of the largest nurseries dedicated to green roof and living wall solutions.

– And welcome back to our new advertiser, Capitol Greenroofs, a full service landscape architectural and contracting firm out of Virginia.

Advertiser Press Release:

–    LiveWall ®, the Planted Wall System Designed in Harmony with Nature, Supports Diversity and Versatility in Green Wall Design.

Industry News

–  EPA Invites Students to Compete in Campus RainWorks Challenge.

–  Sky Gardens Blog

– Over at Sky Gardens, check out Linda’s latest post:  “’s “˜This Week in Review’ on GreenroofsTV: August 17, 2012.”

– “Upcoming Events“

–  September 1st-7th: is the World Urban Forum 6, in Naples, Italy.

– “In the News“

–  A Press Release from PR Newswire announces “Postal Service Saves Millions in Energy Costs.”  The U.S. Postal Service recently reported that it had reduced its total facility energy consumption by nearly 26% since 2003.  Robust energy measurement systems and practical steps, like the ones noted by the Go Green Forever Stamps, Adjust the Thermostat and Turn off Lights Not in Use, contributed to the reduction, which is about the same amount of energy used annually by 90,000 households.

The Postal Service’s first green roof opened in 2009 on top of the Morgan Mail Processing and Distribution Facility in New York, and is the city’s largest green roof.  The agency’s second green roof, on top of the Syracuse Colvin-Elmwood Post Office, was built at no cost to the Postal Service through the sustainability Save the Rain partnership with Onondaga County, New York.  Each roof has an expected lifespan of 50 years, they will help reduce the amount of stormwater runoff flowing into the city’s water systems, and are part of the U.S. Postal Service’s commitment to creating sustainable spaces and facilities.

– Matt Vande Bunte of MLIVE, talks about “How a stormwater fee could make Grand Rapids “˜sexy.'”  A new report to be reviewed by the Grand Rapids City Commission recommends increased funding, through a tax or user fee, for the public stormwater system.  It embraces the concept of giving properties a way to reduce the new cost by installing green infrastructure.  The added cost would be a monthly fee of about $2-$8, and this “rain tax” is becoming a hot topic in Michigan.

West Michigan Environmental Action Council’s executive director, Rachel Hood, says “It’s the (low-impact development) that makes stormwater sexy.  What is recommended in the report is an approach that provides for low-impact development incentives.”  Mayor George Heartwell said, “We’ve got to find a way to fund stormwater.  The issue is how do you fund stormwater.  I think creating a stormwater utility with an equitable assessment process is the fairest and best way to do it.”

– 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 August 24th,  2012 on GreenroofsTV.  I’m Anjuli Velázquez and I’ll see you 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.