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august 2013
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Three awesome reasons to attend the World Green Infrastructure Congress 2013 in Nantes, France!


By Marc Lacaille
ADIVET (L'Association des Toitures Vegetales)


All Photos Courtesy of ADIVET Unless Otherwise Noted

Are you involved in the greening of roofs and walls?  Architects, landscape architects and experts, contractors, technicians, urban planners in the public realm or the private sector, teachers, and researchers concerned with green roofing, THIS MESSAGE IS FOR YOU.

If you haven't already considered traveling next month to lovely Nantes on September 9 through 13, 2013 on the Loire River in west France - as well as Paris - for the World Green Infrastructure Congress 2013, I'd like to tempt you with the following three great reasons:

1. Hear from, meet, and mingle with these renowned Keynote Speakers:

Emilio Ambasz, Green Architect
Patrick Blanc, Botanist
Karl Falkenberg, Director General for the Environment, European Commission
Edouard Fran
çois, Green Architect
Dusty Gedge, President
Manfred Köhler, President of WGIN
Michel P
ena, Landscape Architect (not pictured)

Emilio AmbaszPatrick BlancKarl Falkenberg

Edouard FrançoisDusty GedgeManfred Köhler

- Conferences led by these leading figures of architecture and landscape architecture and more on Tuesday, September 9 and Wednesday, September 11.

- 100 scientific papers, 9 round tables: a unique source of information on the latest international developments on Tuesday, September 9 and Wednesday, September 11.

- The presence of local and regional administrators on Wednesday, September 11.

Of course, there are many other excellent speakers, see them all here in the Programme.

2. Learn and network in a gorgeous state-of-the-art setting:

We'll be interacting with these international leaders in the beautiful serene congress venue, La Cité Nantes Events Center.

- Training sessions on Monday, September 9 led by more than twenty experts.

- The opening ceremony will be hosted by Jerome Bonaldi  on Tuesday, September 9.

3. Relax and enjoy two great excursion days, including the 2nd night in Paris:

Day 1: Choose from the following four tours around Nantes and Pays de la Loire:

"Chlorophyll Valley" programme 1

The capital of Anjou, Angers, is also the capital of plants, seeds and horticulture, and, most notably, is the home of the Végépolys international competitiveness cluster. The programme, as well as including visits to some original green roofs and a remarkable eco-neighbourhood, features two main highlights:

  • The greening of a show building in the TERRA BOTANICA theme park, unique in Europe;

  • Green roofing and walls developed for experimental and research purposes at Agrocampus Ouest school (ex-National Institute of Horticulture and Landscaping).

"Nantes, Green Capital" programme 2

The Ile de Nantes is held up as a mecca of landscaped urban regeneration. It is constantly changing, often in surprising ways, after being masterminded by Alexandre Chementoff's team. Today it is in the hands of the Smets UAPS agency.

To get the best overview and appreciation of this ambitious and still developing urban project, where vegetable vies with mineral, the visit will take place on foot.

The second part of the programme will take us onto the rooftops in the heart of the City of Nantes.

"Third Garden" programme 3

At the end of France's longest river, we find a most unusual green infrastructure on an equally unusual roof, the former Saint Nazaire submarine base. It was created by the famous landscape gardener Gilles Clément.

Gilles Clément's Les jardins du tiers paysage (“Le Bois des Trembles,” “Le Jardin des Orpins et des Graminées,” and “Le Jardin des Étiquettes”) are the highlight of the programme. It also offers you the opportunity to see a new kind of living wall (a "thermal biofacade") and several green roofs.

"Between Sea and Bocage" programme 4

At the far end of a peaceful little valley where the Boulogne runs, in the heart of the Vendée Bocage, stands a perfect example of a green infrastructure - a contemporary building integrated into the local landscape: a museum (over 6,000 m² of sloping roofs). As well as green roofs of different types and with different functions, the programme also includes one of the finest green walls between Nantes and Bordeaux on the oceanfront itself.

Day 2:  See the green Paris sights, too, with:

"Original Green Infrastructures in the Seine" programme


An eclectic programme where experimental and confirmed urban agriculture rubs shoulders with the big names in green infrastructures and landscaping (Patrick Blanc, Gilles Clément). Also takes in the Parisian museums which hold a place of honour when it comes to green roofing: Musée de la Mode, Musée du Quai Branly, Cité de l'architecture & du patrimoine.

And the walls and roofs of the up-and-coming neighbourhoods in the West of Paris are not to be outdone. What could be more practical and original than a boat trip down the Seine, so that you can discover this urban, historical and professional heritage as you enjoy lunch?

Learn more about the Nantes and Paris tours.

Register for the Congress Online: Check hotel availability and rates here.

Revisit all the information in my Guest Feature Article "The World Green Infrastructure Congress 2013 in Nantes: A Key Feature of the Sustainable Cities of Tomorrow" from last month.

Please join the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) and ADIVET in less than two weeks for the first congress about green roofing organized in France.  Take in a great conference and site visits in the beautiful French countryside, plus the hustle and bustle of one of the world's leading metropolises, the stunning City of Lights (and burgeoning greenroofs and greenwalls)!

For any additional information you may require urgently, please feel free to contact us:

Laurence KUHNER


Marc Lacaille

Publisher's Note:  Learn all about what Nantes has to offer as the "European Green Capital 2013" in English and French.  This award recognizes and rewards the work and efforts of Nantes Métropole in the field of environmental protection and planned development of the metropolis for over more than twenty years.

Marc Lacaille, Délégué général, ADIVET

Marc Lacaille

Marc Lacaille has been the Director General of Adivet for two years.  "A graduate agronomist (AgroParisTech, 1975), after a few years in the agronomic research in Africa and in France, I made my career as manager of organizations (association, federation) in the sectors of training (higher education, in-service training) in connection especially with agriculture."

Established in 2003, ADIVET (L'Association des Toitures Vegetales) is the French association for green roofs and walls, and is member of WGIN (World Green Infrastructure Network).  Concerning roofing, the hard work and dedication of the association and its members in recent years (training/information/ experimentation) has resulted in a boom in green roofs in France, with more than one million square metres installed in 2011.  ADIVET is also recognized as a reference organization in its field and is co-editor of the French Professional Standards for Green Roofs and Terraces together with the UNEP (National Union of Landscaping Companies) and the CSFE (French Waterproofing Association).

"Je suis depuis deux ans délégué général de l’Adivet. Ingénieur agronome de formation (AgroParisTech 1975), après quelques années dans la recherche agronomique en Afrique et en France, j’ai fait l’essentiel de ma carrière comme dirigeant d’organisations (association, fédération) dans les secteurs de la formation (enseignement supérieur, formation continue) en relation avec l’agriculture."

Contact Marc Lacaille:
Tél : +33 (0)6 69 18 68 27

The opinions expressed by our Guest Feature writers and editors may not necessarily reflect the beliefs of, and are offered to our readers to simply present individual views and experiences and open a dialogue of further discussion, debate and research.  Enjoy, and if you have a particular comment, please contact the author or send us an email to:


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