Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Additional Resources

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market is located at 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503; 616.805.5308; learn more about its green features. Watch the 2:10 video Grand Rapids Downtown Market Green Roof – Project of the Week 6/22/15 from on the greenroofsTV channel on YouTube. The Grand Rapids Downtown Market Living Walls and Green Roof were featured in the month of August in The 2014 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Calendar. Read the July 30, 2013 Downtown Market starts to shows signs of life as staff moves in, walls and roof show green by Jim Harger at and the June 28, 2013 Living Roof and Wall Installed at Grand Rapids Downtown Market Press Release. See the Project Showcase from LiveWall.

Learn more about LiveRoof/LiveWall in The Greenroof & Greenwall Directory.

The $30 million development Grand Rapids Downtown Market is a mixed-use facility that brings together production, distribution, marketing and education about local produce. The indoor facility features a 24-vendor market hall, while dozens of farmers and artisans line the outdoor farmer’s market shed. The founders of the Downtown Market had a vision for a green facility which reflected their commitment to local, sustainable products. As the first LEED-intended green market in the U.S., the design team carefully chose products which met the green building standards.

In May, 2013 a LiveWall system totaling 832 square feet was installed on three separate sections of the exterior brick walls planted with hardy perennials, enhancing sustainability with 100 percent plant survival. The large greenwall is facing west and the two smaller walls are facing south, one of which goes up and around a doorway. The outdoor living walls are perhaps the biggest in the state.

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market now has a living roof to complement its living walls. In keeping with the LEED Certified Downtown Market, the LiveRoof team established a healthy, sustainable ecosystem that covers the rooftop with seamless vegetation. Installation was completed on June 28, 2013 on the 1,200 square foot living, green roof. The Market’s 4.25 inch LiveRoof hybrid green roof system is publicly accessible, providing a relaxing space for visitors and staff and featuring three patterned plant mixes of yellow, green and pink, and red and purple

While passersby may not realize the green roof is on top of the marketplace, it is hard for them to miss the living wall.

“It’s spellbindingly beautiful and onlookers are literally stopped in their tracks, struck by its impressively beautiful display,” Amber Ponce said, Business Development Director for LiveWall and LiveRoof, the Spring Lake-based sister companies leading the market for green roofs and living walls. “It’s the very best time of year to see it, now while it’s in its peak blossom and prime bloom.”

The LiveWall design team worked closely with the project architects to ensure that their vision translated flawlessly into reality. A wall collage of green-hued plants was part of architect Hugh Boyd’s plan to complement the Downtown Market building design. Grand Rapids-based designers Pete Lazdins and Michelle Hoffner, of Progressive AE, assisted in the selection of LiveRoof and LiveWall systems. Local general contractor Pioneer Construction, who built the Market, oversaw the living roof installation, which was completed by Dorr-based contractor Modern Roofing.

Locally sourced and grown materials are essential to the ethos of the market, with made-in-Michigan aluminum railings and molded planter boxes, as well the wall and roof plants, which were all grown less than 30 miles from the Market’s location. In total, both systems were produced using materials almost entirely sourced within 200 miles of the project.

See the Grand Rapids Downtown Market Green Roof in the Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database.


Our Sponsors