Paris banned all cars for a day to highlight pollution issues

October 2, 2017 by  
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Pedestrians and cyclists cheered yesterday as Paris closed all of its streets to cars. The government held a Car Free Day and the streets filled with bikers, walkers, and roller-bladers instead of smog. Paris held a Car Free Day in 2015 and 2016 as well. But this was the first time they extended the boundaries to include the entire city . From 11 AM to 6 PM local time, cars were asked to stay off the streets – with exceptions made for emergency vehicles, taxis, and buses. The Paris City Council hosted Car Free Day, together with collective Paris Sans Voiture , or Paris Without Car, which is behind the city-wide car-free idea. Related: Activists Show What it Would Look Like if Bikes Took Up as Much Room as Cars Pollution from cars is often an issue in France’s capital – the Associated Press said mayor Anne Hidalgo was elected after promising to slash air pollution and cut traffic . The government’s statement on the day said one of the Car Free Day’s objectives was “to show that cities can and must invent concrete solutions to fight against pollution” coming from road traffic. They encouraged people to travel by scooters , skates, bikes , or walking . The symbolic event also brought results. The government said Airparif Association conducted independent measurements during the Car Free Day using sensors and a bicycle outfitted with measuring instruments. They saw “an increased decrease in nitrogen dioxide levels along major roads” and “access roads to the capital.” Meanwhile, the Bruitparif Observatory looked at noise with the help of 11 measurement stations. They saw sound energy decreased 20 percent on average, as compared against a regular Sunday. Via Paris and Associated Press/NBC News Images © Henri Garat – Mairie de Paris

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Paris banned all cars for a day to highlight pollution issues

San Francisco’s Wave Organ captures the sounds of the sea to make haunting music

September 29, 2017 by  
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A symphony of strange and haunting music made from the waves can be heard at the tip of a jetty in San Francisco. Part sculpture, part musical instrument, the Wave Organ is an unusual land art installation that harnesses the rhythms of the water. Created by Exploratorium artists Peter Richards and George Gonzalez, the wave-activated sound sculpture is set atop the salvaged remains of a demolished cemetery and is one of the city’s best hidden gems. Installed in 1986, the Wave Organ is a somewhat obscure landmark, often overlooked due to its hard-to-find location at the end of a jetty east of the St. Francis Yacht Club. Making the trek out there, however, is worth it. Surrounded by stunning 360-degree views of the San Francisco bay, the environmental artwork harnesses the pulse of the sea through 25 PVC and concrete pipes located at various elevations that transmit the sounds of crashing waves and gurgling water to elevated openings for listening. Related: Incredible ‘Sea Organ’ uses ocean waves to make beautiful music The Wave Organ is best heard during high tide, but can still be enjoyed at other times of the day though the gurgling rhythms will be much quieter. The music of the bay, which is made by waves slapping against and pushed through the pipes, is relatively subtle. Visitors will need to sit and let their ears attune to the environment to fully enjoy the performance. Carved granite and marble salvaged from the demolished crypts of the city’s former Laurel Hill Cemetery provide plenty of seating. Times for high tides can be checked here . + Exploratorium Images via Wikimedia , Shutterstock

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San Francisco’s Wave Organ captures the sounds of the sea to make haunting music

Amsterdam is transforming a prison into a green energy-generating neighborhood

September 13, 2017 by  
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A brighter, solar-powered future is coming to Bijlmerbajes, a former prison complex in Amsterdam . The Dutch government tapped OMA to design a masterplan of the 7.5-hectare site, as well as a significant portion of the 135,000-square-meter mixed-use development. Designed in collaboration with FABRICations architects and LOLA Landscape , the new masterplan will transform the prison complex’s iconic six towers into Bajes Kwartier, an energy-neutral development powered by renewable energy and built largely from recycled materials. Built in the 1970s near the Amsterdam Amstel railways station, the Bijlmerbajes prison complex is a well-known urban landmark that permanently closed in June 2016. The former prison’s six linked towers and administrative building are located in the geographic center of Amsterdam’s new urban development, making it ripe for rebirth as a vibrant civic and cultural space. The new 7.5-hectare Bajes Kwartier development will conceptually preserve Bijlmerbajes’ “island character” and reuse building materials. Prefab elements from the existing walls will be recycled as cladding for the new residential buildings, while prison bars will be recycled into balustrades, and cell doors reused as edge panels for pedestrian bridges. Bajes Kwartier will become a mostly car-free environment and focus on elevating the pedestrian and cyclist experience. The masterplan includes approximately 1,350 residential units that include rentals and luxury condominiums, with 30 percent set aside for affordable housing. All but one of the prison towers will be demolished and the remaining building will be transformed into a “green tower” with a vertical park and urban farming . The centrally located administrative building will be turned into an arts and design center. The mixed-use development will also comprise a restaurant, health center, school, parks, water features, and underground parking lot. Related: OMA gets green light for their first major public building in the UK All the new buildings will be energy-neutral thanks to superior insulation and energy saving design, as well as hookups to solar power, wind power, and biomass power . Nearly 100 percent of the existing building material will be reused or recycled. The project is scheduled to begin in early 2018. + OMA Via ArchDaily

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Amsterdam is transforming a prison into a green energy-generating neighborhood

Smog-fighting music academy proposal uses an air purifier system as effective as 33,000 trees

February 1, 2017 by  
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The Polish city of Krakow has some of the worst air pollution in the world. In hopes of improving the city’s air quality, FAAB Architektura proposed a smog-fighting music academy fitted with a German air purification system that they say works effectively as 33,000 city trees. The music academy was designed as part of a larger “Krakow Music City” masterplan that envisions a largely car-free and environmentally friendly development atop a former military base. Located between Krakow and the Vistula River, the proposed masterplan is designed to blend into the natural landscape with its vernacular wooden lap panel cladding and use of energy-efficient technologies. Around 1,300 square meters of a Green City Solutions -developed air purification product would be embedded in the music academy’s moss-covered rooftops. The special moss culture converts air pollutants into biomass. Related: China’s crazy smog-sucking vacuum tower might actually be working The green-roofed buildings comprise an education wing, concert hall, and small guest building carefully placed around existing trees and designed to immerse students and visitors in nature. Ground heat exchangers would be used to reduce energy use. Rainwater would also be collected in an underground tank and reused wherever possible. FAAB Architektura submitted their proposal to a design competition hosted by Akademia Muzyczna w Krakowie , which will reveal the winning entry on March 31, 2017. + FAAB Architektura Via ArchDaily Images via FAAB Architektura

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Smog-fighting music academy proposal uses an air purifier system as effective as 33,000 trees

Gorgeous solar-powered and pedestrian-friendly housing development is coming to Turkey

August 10, 2015 by  
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Gorgeous solar-powered and pedestrian-friendly housing development is coming to Turkey

Luke Jerram’s Massive Blue Water Slide Stops City Traffic for a Day in Bristol

May 6, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Luke Jerram’s Massive Blue Water Slide Stops City Traffic for a Day in Bristol Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: art interventions , car free , luke jerram , Urban design , urban intervention

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Luke Jerram’s Massive Blue Water Slide Stops City Traffic for a Day in Bristol

Car-Free Skyvillage Fights Air Pollution Over Los Angeles’ Freeways

March 21, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Car-Free Skyvillage Fights Air Pollution Over Los Angeles’ Freeways Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: air pollution , car free , car-free utopia , evolo skyscraper competition , evolo skyscraper competition 2014 , freeways , green filtering towers , Los Angeles , mixed-use , modular skyscraper , skyvillage , urban fabric , ziwei song        

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Car-Free Skyvillage Fights Air Pollution Over Los Angeles’ Freeways

Summer Streets Returns to NYC Today, Banning Cars From 7 Miles of Manhattan!

August 6, 2011 by  
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Hey New York, go run in the street! Seriously, do it! Summer Streets returns to the city today, banning cars from seven glorious miles of Manhattan from 7 a.m. until 1 p.m. The city will close Park Avenue and connecting streets from the Brooklyn Bridge all the way up to Central Park . The DOT has created a route with spurs and rest stops along low-traffic streets to the Hudson River Greenway, Harlem, Governors Island , and other popular destinations, so you will have plenty to do as you peruse the car-free avenue! READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 7 miles of car free streets , banning cars from manhattan , car free manhattan , car free nyc , car free streets , car free streets new york , mayor bloomberg , no cars in manhattan , nyc department of transportation , nyc dot , summer streets , summer streets manhattan , summer streets new york city , summer streets nyc

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Summer Streets Returns to NYC Today, Banning Cars From 7 Miles of Manhattan!

Local Colorado Brewery Transports Kegs via Tricycle

August 5, 2011 by  
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Photos Courtesy of Zach Yendra, Yendra Built Cycles When Shannon and Colin Westcott decided to start Equinox Brewing in Fort Collins, Colorado, they wanted it to be a local, green operation. And that meant no keg deliveries by car or truck. So to save themselves a lot of back-breaking keg-carrying, the Westcotts teamed up with custom bike designers Yendra Built Cycles . The partnership yielded the … Read the full story on TreeHugger

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Local Colorado Brewery Transports Kegs via Tricycle

To Make Pedestrians Kings of the City, Strasbourg Plans to Drop City Speed Limits to 18 MPH

February 11, 2011 by  
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Strasbourg’s Place de l’Homme de Fer. Photo: Lauri Pitkänen under a Creative Commons license .

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To Make Pedestrians Kings of the City, Strasbourg Plans to Drop City Speed Limits to 18 MPH

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