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Additional Resources

Visit The Department Store, Stephen Marr Hair Salon website. Read Linda Velazquez’s December 29, 2009 Sky Gardens Blog post “First Greenwall in New Zealand Makes Sustainability Sexy” about The Department Store, Stephen Marr Hair Salon, NZ Greenwall. For more info about Natural Habitats Landscapes, visit their website:

Takapuna is the home of one New Zealand?s most innovative ventures: The Department Store, a multi-dimensional fashion, art and beauty experience across three floors. Spearheaded by Stephen Marr, Karen Walker and Dan Gosling from Black Box, the Department Store showcases the very best of fresh, creative New Zealand brands, and it has embraced an international level of retail thinking by designing this unique space with emphasis on our environment. In 2010 the store was named top retail concept store in the world by Monocle magazine.

One of the centerpieces of the store is the lush interior greenwall in the Stephen Marr salon on the top floor. The double-sided greenwall, designed and installed by Natural Habitats Landscapes in 2009, is New Zealand?s first interior greenwall. The wall is 10 metres long by 2 metres high and boasts well over 1000 individual plants. It divides the upper level, promoting unique spaces that can be used for presentations such as fashion shows. The building has had skylights installed to ensure the wall is given as much natural light as possible, and the use of supplementary man-made lighting is kept at a minimum.

The investment into this original and breathtaking piece of artwork, aside from supporting Marr?s ?green? stance, is a powerful branding exercise and demonstrates the incredible environmental benefits a greenwall can have such as increased thermal insulation to buildings, noise dampening, and creating cleaner and better quality air, which means healthier buildings and people. From a commercial perspective, the greenwall increases the building?s value and has also been found to raise employee productivity.

Eighteen months after initial installation, the wall is thriving with Marr commenting that the wall ?continuously receives both praise and attention.? Indeed this verdant artwork is a logical addition to Stephen Marr?s collection of sustainable practices.

Wall highlights include:

? Commercial Space Living Wall
? Modular gabion system used like cladding approx – each module/panel being 1×2 metres (3×7 feet) with a depth of 15 cm (6 inches)
? Custom made size and planting design
? Marr greenwall is 10×2 metres (33x 7 feet) double sided stand alone on a 90 degree angle with floor (direct vertical)
? Open to public – up market hair salon space
? NZ made (locally produced)
? Unique light soil-free media
? External framework is marine grade aluminium (50% recycled)
? Planting directly into panels before installation ? 3 month establishment phase until full coverage
? Automated irrigation and nutrition
? Installation time of approximately 3 days.


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