Pittsburgh leads in green energy with largest single sloped solar array in the US

August 18, 2020 by  
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The shift from non-renewable sources of energy to green energy continues to gain momentum. In the past few years, we have seen the launch of groundbreaking renewable energy projects around the world. One of the latest projects is a solar array for Mill 19 at Hazelwood Green in Pittsburgh. The project, led by Scalo Solar Solutions , is now the single largest sloped solar array in the U.S. It consists of 4,785 silicon solar panels that are capable of powering the entire Mill 19 plant. The project was established at a cost of $5 million and is expected to provide sufficient power to supply the energy needs of Mill 19. The 4,785 silicon solar panels sit on a 133,000-square-foot area on the frame of Mill 19. The solar panels were installed using an innovative technology called the Spider WorkWeb. With this approach, the panels were directly attached to Mill 19’s existing frame, thereby cutting the cost of putting up a new frame for the project. Each of the LG solar panels was assembled on the ground and then lifted and fitted into position. Related: IceWind launches residential wind turbines in the US The Hazelwood Green site, where Mill 19 is located, is seen as a model for sustainable development. Mill 19 has a goal to achieve 96% daylight autonomy, providing maximum thermal efficiency. Mill 19 is also targeting LEED Gold certification. The design of the solar slope caters to stormwater drainage. A strategic drainage system has been set in place, which will see all the water through a rainwater garden to a centrally located filtration basin. The Pittsburgh solar project is more proof that there is a possibility of attaining 100% renewable energy in many industries. There are many other businesses and organizations that can use the same model to reduce dependence on non-renewable sources of energy. + Pittsburgh Green Story Image via Pittsburgh Green Story and Andreas

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Pittsburgh leads in green energy with largest single sloped solar array in the US

Hello Wood launches flat-pack kits for DIY tiny cabins

August 18, 2020 by  
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In one of its latest timber-centric projects, Budapest-based design studio Hello Wood has created the Kabinka, a prefab cabin inspired by the tiny house movement . Developed with affordability in mind, the modular structure comes in four sizes — ranging between 12 to 20 square meters — and comes flat-packed for easy transportation. Each cabin kit can be assembled by hand in just one to three days. Crafted under the slogan “design cabin at a reasonable price,” Hello Wood’s Kabinka is a minimalist, gable-roofed tiny cabin that is inspired by the rural vernacular of Hungary. Each Kabinka is designed and manufactured in Hungary and comfortably fits a tea kitchen, a bathroom, a couch and a stove. The four base sizes include the small at 12 square meters; the medium at 14.9 square meters; the large at 17.3 square meters; and the extra-large that includes 20 square meters of indoor living space along with a 9.6-square-meter outdoor patio. The cabin rises to an exterior height of 4.06 meters with an interior floor-to-ceiling height that is tall enough to accommodate a loft level. Related: Hello Wood unveils a tiny cabin that sleeps up to 8 people Flexibility was key in the design of Kabinka, which can be used as a weekend retreat, private work space or even as an extra meeting room or community space for a company. “The compact coolable and heatable interior can be turned into a tiny home that you can enjoy all year-round,” Hello Wood explained. “Then there’s its environmental footprint; thanks to its low energy consumption and environmental focus, the cabin is also greener than a house built of non-renewable materials with conventional technologies.” The prefabricated timber elements of the Kabinka tiny cabin are constructed with a CNC machine. The base model construction is estimated to take between six to eight weeks; customization and extra features such as additional windows are available. Hello Wood developed the Kabinka as a DIY project that can be assembled without the need for skilled labor. The retail price, which is available upon request, does not include shipping, groundwork or assembly, but it does include technical documents and an assembly manual. + Hello Wood Images via Hello Wood

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Hello Wood launches flat-pack kits for DIY tiny cabins

Winning design unveiled for nature-filled Shenzhen Childrens Hospital

August 18, 2020 by  
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A vertical “secret garden”, green-roofed terraces and mountain-shaped massing define B+H Architects’ winning entry for the new Children’s Hospital and Science & Education Building in Shenzhen. Designed in collaboration with East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI), the proposed facility celebrates the local landscape by integrating lush plantings around and inside the urban campus. The hospital’s nature-filled interiors, ground-floor “urban living room” and vibrant color palette also aims to inspire awe and wonder in both the building occupants and the surrounding community. Selected as the unanimous first place winner in an international design competition held by the Shenzhen municipal government, the proposal takes inspiration from the mountains in the distance for its terraced massing with upper floors stepped back to form sky gardens. The new facility will be located to the west of the existing Shenzhen Children’s Hospital, which has been a landmark in the city’s Futian area since it was founded in 1998. Coined as a “once-in-a-lifetime” healthcare facility, the new campus will not only provide top-quality care for children but will also house facilities for advanced research and learning in pediatric medicine. Related: Rehabilitation Center of China is topped with a healing roof garden “Children live very much in the present and can experience each moment very intensely — sights, sounds, scale, touch, colors and patterns hold delights and surprises that we as adults often overlook,” said Stephanie Costelloe, principal and director of Healthcare, Asia for B+H Architects. “We wanted to instill a sense of wonder in every corner which would celebrate their unique and joyful view of the world — whilst also encouraging adults to interact with the environment in a similarly social, playful and collaborative way.” The extensive use of greenery ties the hospital interiors to the adjacent Lianhuashan Park and is part of the architects’ vision to create a “unique micro-landscape” that helps building occupants engage with the surrounding landscape while providing therapeutic benefits. + B+H Architects Images via B+H Architects

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Winning design unveiled for nature-filled Shenzhen Childrens Hospital

The net-zero Frick Environmental Center is officially one of the worlds greenest buildings

May 14, 2018 by  
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The Frick Environmental Center (FEC) in Pittsburgh just became the first municipally owned building in the U.S. to achieve Living Building certification — arguably the most rigorous proven performance green building standard in the world. Designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson , the FEC is among the world’s greenest certified buildings and it earned LEED Platinum certification last year. The 15,600-square-foot building produces as much energy and water as its consumes annually and it incorporates a wide array of other sustainable features including geothermal heating and cooling, locally sourced non-toxic building materials and daylight dimming controls and sensors. Conceived as the gateway to Frick Park, the city’s largest public park, the FEC serves as an experiential environmental education center. Locally and sustainably harvested black locust clads the building and — combined with the native landscaping on its nearly four-acre site — helps blend the project into its surroundings. The FEC comprises a public living room and gallery; K-12 classrooms for environmental education programs; and offices and facilities for the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy Education staff. Related: Man builds ultra-efficient green home as a love letter to the environment The FEC is one of only 21 buildings in the world to achieve Living Building certification and is the world’s first Living Building in the U.S. that’s municipally owned and open to the public. Designed as a “living laboratory,” the building makes its many sustainable technologies – such as its 650-kilowatt photovoltaic array and reclaimed water system – as visible as possible to the public as part of their commitment to hands-on environmental education. + Bohlin Cywinski Jackson Interior images by Alexander Denmarsh, outdoor walkway image by Elliott Cramer for Denmarsh Studios

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The net-zero Frick Environmental Center is officially one of the worlds greenest buildings

Uber confirms rumors they are testing a self-driving car

May 19, 2016 by  
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For the past year, rumors have been swirling that Uber is getting into the game of self-driving cars . The company opened the Advanced Technologies Center in Pittsburgh, where journalists spotted a vehicle that looked suspiciously like a driverless one marked with the Uber logo. This week, the company officially announced in a press release they are testing a self-driving car on the streets of Pittsburgh . The car is a hybrid Ford Fusion, and while it has “self-driving capabilities,” a driver will be present to take over if needed. Along with testing its autonomous function, the car will collect data for maps . According to Uber, the vehicle has been equipped with “a variety of sensors including radars, laser scanners, and high resolution cameras to map details of the environment.” Related: The self-driving car didn’t start with Google, or Tesla Uber allowed Pittsburgh Tribune-Review journalist Aaron Aupperlee to take a ride. He said , “The car’s sensors detected parked cars sticking out into traffic, jaywalkers, bicyclists, and a goose crossing River Avenue.” The transportation networking giant claims they still have a long way to go, but that they’ve received support from Pittsburgh city leaders including the mayor, who expressed excitement that Uber is pursuing innovative technology in his city. Uber said the city environment in Pittsburgh is the perfect place to test out their self-driving car, since it has to face challenges such as snow, hills, and narrow roads . While many have focused on the developments coming out of leaders like Google and Tesla in the self-driving car sphere, The Verge reports many experts are actually following Uber’s progress as they stand to benefit more as a company from autonomous technology. In their press release heralding the Pittsburgh test car, Uber said self-driving vehicles could save millions of lives, claiming, “1.3 million people die every year in car accidents – 94 percent of those accidents involve human error.” Via The Verge Images via Uber and Wikimedia Commons

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Google patents sticky "fly paper" car hood to protect pedestrians in self-driving car crashes

May 19, 2016 by  
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Oh, to be a fly on the wall at Google . Imagine the amazing ping pong games and impromptu office jam sessions you would witness. Chances are you would also catch a whiff of Google’s latest innovations , some in their primordial brainstorming phase. One such idea took one step further into reality when Google was awarded a patent for a strong adhesive automobile hood, designed to catch pedestrians that have been hit by cars before they reach the ground and are potentially run over. Is Google preparing to launch some sticky self driving cars ? The adhesive hood patent was filed in 2014 and awarded to Google earlier this week, though the company has no immediate plans to bring it to life. In the patent, Google frames its idea as a potential safeguard for self-driving cars as the technology is developed. “While such systems are being developed,” reads the patent, “it must be acknowledged that, on occasion, collisions between a vehicle and a pedestrian still occur Such safety mechanisms may become unnecessary as accident-avoidance technology is being further developed, but at present it is desirable to provide vehicles with pedestrian safety mechanisms.” Related: Google’s driverless car causes an accident for the first time To avoid endlessly trapping small objects like actual insects and debris, Google’s automotive “fly paper” would be covered with an “eggshell” layer that breaks upon impact. As crazy it sounds, the idea may have some scientific merit. “Getting hit by a car once is much preferable to getting hit by a car and then the ground and then another car,” says Rebecca Thompson, head of public outreach for the American Physical Society. “Cyclists wear helmets not as much to prevent their head’s impact with the car as much as their head’s impact with the ground when they fall.” There are some drawbacks for the design, such as the potential for trapping a victim in a dangerous position on the hood. However, Thompson believes that such a design could decrease the number of hit-and-run incidents. After all, it’s hard to flee when a human fly is stuck to your vehicle. Via Gizmodo Images via Becky Stern/Flickr and Travis Wise/Flickr  

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Google patents sticky "fly paper" car hood to protect pedestrians in self-driving car crashes

BIG unveils green-roofed master plan for Pittsburgh’s Lower Hill district

November 19, 2015 by  
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Contest Inspires Creatives to Put Old Items to Good (re)Use

November 22, 2013 by  
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The Reuse Inspiration Contest, sponsored by Construction Junction and publicized by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, pits contestants against each other in using reclaimed items for home-renovation and art projects.

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Contest Inspires Creatives to Put Old Items to Good (re)Use

Gensler’s Super Sustainable Tower at PNC Plaza Breaks Ground in Pittsburgh

November 26, 2012 by  
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Read the rest of Gensler’s Super Sustainable Tower at PNC Plaza Breaks Ground in Pittsburgh Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , building update , Buro Happold , eco design , eco skyscraper , eco tower , Gensler , green architecture , Green Building , green design , Paladino & Company , pittsburgh , PNC , PNC Financial Services , skyscraper , Sustainable Building , sustainable design , sustainable tower , tower at pnc plaza

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Mak3D: World’s First 3D Printing Co-Working Space Opens in London

November 26, 2012 by  
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What do you do if you’re a designer with an amazing idea for a product, but no way to make it? There might a huge buzz around 3D printing , but we’re still a long way off from everyone having a machine at home. If you’re in London, you can head to Mak3d, the world’s first 3D printing co-working environment! Launched in August this year, Mak3d occupies a 1,000 square foot space on East London’s buzzing Brick Lane. Founded by Nick Allen of 3D printing bureau 3dprintuk, the Mak3d coworking space’s in-house equipment includes a 3D scanner and an Objet30 high definition 3D printer, which produces models from a resin called Vero White Plus. Allen noticed that though there were co-working spaces in London, most catered to individuals in the technology industry or computer-based designers, and there weren’t many spaces for makers that needed to make noise, and a maybe a bit of a mess. Individuals with ideas can come to the Mak3d space, and working from CAD files, sketches or even just a description, the concept can be turned into a physical model, either with the help of 3dprintuk’s designers, or if the person has the skills, they can do it themselves. 3D designers who rent desk space get access to the 3D scanner and reduced rates for printing. Current residents include a toy designer and jewelry designer Rob Elford , with room for more. Desk space for 3D designers starts at £200 a month, but there’s also the option of free workspace for designers skilled at 3D modelling who are willing to contribute 2 hours a week in work.

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