LAVA unveils greenery-infused Garden Island to revamp Sydney Harbour

October 20, 2017 by  
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Australia-based firm LAVA just unveiled a stunning proposal for converting an inaccessible plot of land near Sydney Harbour into a sustainable waterfront community. The ambitious Garden Island proposal envisions a vibrant green public space with eco-friendly residential towers and multi-use buildings that would host activities throughout the year. Although the area is currently used by the Royal Australian Navy, the proposal hopes to completely overhaul the area in order to convert it into a new waterfront community. Using a sustainable model , a breezy cityscape would be built along the existing coastline that would include residential and multi-use buildings operating with green technology. The various towers, which would offer stunning views of the harbor, would all be installed with plenty of rooftop terraces and surrounded by public gardens . Related: LAVA’s Winning Design for Masdar’s City Center LAVA’s proposal also includes implementing various adaptive reuse methods where possible. For example, a former dry dock would be converted into a floating market that would have room for public baths, shopping, and performance spaces. The development would also install a number of amenities throughout renovated space such as a waterfront promenade, museums, and various social facilities that would aim to foster a strong sense of community. + LAVA Images via LAVA

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LAVA unveils greenery-infused Garden Island to revamp Sydney Harbour

Madrid’s new ‘Desert City’ is a spectacular home for over 400 species of cacti

August 1, 2017 by  
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Madrid’s dry heat may not bode well for lush flower gardens, but the hundreds of cacti in the city’s new cactus park are sure to thrive. Designed by GarciaGerman Arquitectos , the massive 54,000-square-feet Desert City is an educational, sustainable , and ecological complex aimed at educating visitors about the vibrant world of the xerophytic plants. Located on a formerly vacant lot in the Madrid suburb of San Seastián de los Reyes, the expansive complex includes a large garden space as well a massive indoor greenhouse . The park – one of Europe’s largest spaces dedicated to cacti – grows over 400 xerophytic species. The complex also includes exhibition space as well as a shop and a restaurant. Related: Cactus Park in Taiwan draws architectural inspiration from prickly succulents At the heart of the complex is an extended glazed “billboard building,” which is elevated over the ground level. It connects the greenhouse space to a cloister-like outdoor garden with a shallow water pond. Additional spaces located in the greenhouse will be used for presentations, exhibitions, workshops, etc. The architects used a number of green building strategies in the park’s construction such as prefabricated materials, photovoltaic glass, and geothermal power. The greenhouse and gardens were also installed with a high-tech water recovery system that helps the park reduce its water usage. + Desert City + GarciaGerman Arquitectos Via Curbed Images and video courtesy of Imagen Subliminal

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Madrid’s new ‘Desert City’ is a spectacular home for over 400 species of cacti

Barcelona set to double tree population in major urban greening push

May 18, 2017 by  
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You may think there isn’t much space for a centuries-old, built-out city like Barcelona to radically greenify itself with double the amount of trees and expanded green space. But that’s exactly what the city aims to do. They recently rolled out a Plan of the Green and Biodiversity Barcelona 2020 , including ambitious goals that could offer ideas to other dense cities needing greenery too. Air pollution , heat, and climate change are among the reasons Barcelona needs to become a greener city. But they have a plan – their 2020 goals could see twice the number of trees flourishing in the city, alongside park space increased by two thirds. Overall each citizen could receive nearly 11 square feet of extra green spaces . The plan aims to provide Barcelona with 108 acres of new green areas by 2019 and more than 400 acres by 2020. Related: Paris allows anyone to plant an urban garden How will the city accomplish this feat? First, they’ll plant five new gardens , which will later be connected to open spaces already in place to form thriving plant-filled corridors. Green roofs will also help keep the city cool. Creepers will snake across bare walls. And in spaces waiting for construction, the city will plant temporary gardens. CityLab reports some of the new gardens are already being built, and their designs reveal how to find space in a city where one might think space would be lacking. For example, the largest garden will be planted around a city square once filled with cars. That traffic will now be diverted to tunnels. Another garden is more controversial – the city will clear out a courtyard block filled with squatted 1920’s workshops to make way for greenery. One garden will green up a scrap of ex-industrial semi-wasteland. Slowly the city is filling up with new flora and fauna – local architecture firm JORNETLLOPPASTOR drew up many of these images around five years ago. Green corridors planted in the past have been successful; a 2000 one restored life to a stream formerly dirty. As climate change raises temperatures, a city that already reaches around 90 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer stands to benefit greatly from the air-cleaning, cooling plants. Via CityLab Images via Ajuntament de Barcelona

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Abandoned greenhouse transformed into gorgeous glass office filled with trees

April 10, 2017 by  
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Architecture firm O-office converted an old abandoned greenhouse in Guangzhou, China into a dreamy glass office space with filled with living plants. The architects paid homage to the building’s green roots by infusing the space with tons of sunlight and loads of greenery – including three trees that grow up into the interior space from the ground floor. Using the building’s original concrete portico, the architects recreated the entryway with pockets of mini gardens. The office space was designed for a local landscape design firm so the designers wanted to create an intimate space that evokes a small “village-like” work environment. Using the greenhouse’s original layout , the interior is flooded with natural daylight and ventilation, which reduces the energy usage of the building . Related: Nature-filled office takes over a former factory building in Amsterdam-Noord The interior of the office space is divided into two floors. The bottom floor is designed for team collaboration, while the upper floor has separate spaces for independent work. All of the interior, however, has an open-air feel to the space, which is naturally ventilated thanks to multiple timber-framed windows. Large concrete stairs with pockets of greenery lead from the central atrium to the upper floor and three large heteropanax trees grow up through the interior , further connecting the building to nature. + O-office Architects Via Architizer

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Abandoned greenhouse transformed into gorgeous glass office filled with trees

Asif Khan and MINI created calming forest oases in busy London

September 16, 2016 by  
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With a theme of Connect, Relax and Create, the trio of rectangular structures invite busy individuals to pause, whether to send a text, to take a deep breath, or to have a conversation. The project explores “third places” that exist between home and work, a concept of growing importance as city dwellings get smaller and workers more mobile. The structures are constructed using materials familiar to agricultural architecture, with layers of transparent, corrugated polycarbonate diffusing light and providing surprisingly effective insulation from the sound of passing cars and buses. Airy aluminum roofs are perched on top of the clear structures, giving a glimpse of sky and surrounding buildings. The springy flooring was made from recycled playground material , adding another element of playfulness. Related: Three mini forests are popping up in the middle of London On hectic Old Street, the Connect Space is a slim corridor filled with conservatory plants. Wooden benches line the sides, inviting people to sit and chat, either spontaneously or pre-planned. The addition of a long dining table allows the space to be used for an intimate meal. The Relax Space is a vertical rectangle filled with potted plants and vines. Entering via the open underside, visitors can visually block out the outside world. Its location on Pitfield Street sets it next to one of L ondon’s new Cycle Superhighways , with wide cycle lanes providing a popular route for commuters and locals alike. The largest structure, the Create Space, features scores of plants around its exterior, with tiered stadium seating on the inside and USB ports for charging devices. Located in Charles Square, surrounded by residential buildings and concrete, it’s a welcoming, light-filled oasis. The use of potted plants was a deliberate choice, to both give the temporary structures a familiar, approachable feel and to examine the role of greenery in delineating zones of use. “We use plants as a tool to assert our personal space at its boundary with public space, whether on our desk at the office or at the perimeter of our home,” designer Asif Khan explains. Visitors and locals will be encouraged to take the potted plants home. Local horticulturalist Jin Ahn of Conservatory Archives , who selected the greenery for the project, and her team will be on hand to tell visitors about the plants and to help them select varieties to take home. People can also drop off plants they no longer want, to create another aspect of community exchange. Shoreditch has experienced rapid change in the past couple of years, with tech start-ups in the so-called Silicon Roundabout and student housing bringing new people into the area. The designers hope that the MINI Living “Forests” will provide an additional opportunity for visitors, newcomers and long-time residents to share space and connect in a rapidly changing city. + London Design Festival + Asif Khan

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Asif Khan and MINI created calming forest oases in busy London

BLAU’s innovative Link Hybrid Towers will bring green urban living to Graz, Austria

March 18, 2016 by  
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December 2015, BLAU took part in the Europan 13 competition “The Adaptable City 2”. They got shortlisted for their proposal of the new station area in Graz, Austria, called Link Hybrid Towers. BLAU designed a mixed use space that combines residential, office and retail but also cultural and social facilities. The aim of this urban scale project is to link the East and the West sides of the city into a dense urban node that enhances high life quality and introduces natural elements in the neighborhood. Read the rest of BLAU’s innovative Link Hybrid Towers will bring green urban living to Graz, Austria

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Why Rainwater Collection Works And How To Do It Correctly

January 18, 2016 by  
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Rainwater collection isn’t just a trend for experienced gardeners with established plots, either. According to the survey, about 15 percent of millennials, many with small but efficient urban gardens, report using rain water collectors. One in five…

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Why Rainwater Collection Works And How To Do It Correctly

Cara de Planta is a DIY kit that lets you build your own vertical garden

October 12, 2015 by  
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Vertical gardens are very appealing and offer plenty of benefits, but making them is a lot of work. Cara de Planta is a DIY vertical gardening system that persons of all ages and sizes can use to make a personalized, professional-looking vertical garden in no time. Cara de Planta means plant face, which comes from its face-like design. You don’t need to prepare the surface, since Cara de Planta has a waterproof barrier to keep the walls dry, so you can use it anywhere. There are two models available, one that lets water through with an irrigation line at the top of a garden which, with the aid of gravity, waters the whole thing. The other contains the water, so it won’t drip or stain floors or walls. The water is then recirculated to the substrate by capillarity with a special flap. Each kit comes with everything you need to get going. You can either use a soil-free or soil based system and each one is made out of recycled PET. + Cara de Planta The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link. Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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Cara de Planta is a DIY kit that lets you build your own vertical garden

Unroll an UrbMat to Grow Fresh Veggies Quickly and Easily

January 14, 2014 by  
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The new UrbMat by UrbnEarth makes growing your own garden as easy as rolling out a mat ! Each mat grows 12 types of non-GMO herbs, vegetables and flowers, which can be planted just about anywhere, and teaches both kids and adults the ease of growing your own fresh food . Read the rest of Unroll an UrbMat to Grow Fresh Veggies Quickly and Easily Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: DIY urban garden , easy gardens , eco design , green design , plantable mat , roll out garden , roll out gardens , sustainable design , urban gardens , UrbMat , UrbMat roll out garden , UrbnEarth        

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Unroll an UrbMat to Grow Fresh Veggies Quickly and Easily

The Super®Bag Vertical Growbag Makes Gardening in Small Spaces Much Simpler

August 13, 2013 by  
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The Super®Bag is a vertical growbag made for urban gardeners. This cool and simple idea from Harvey Grows  provides a fantastic growing solution for those who live in the city and have limited outdoor space available. The space-saving vertical design keeps your balcony or terrace area free from clutter with its large containers, but still provides you with plenty of area to sow your seeds. Check out Harvey Grows ‘ newly launched Kickstarter campaign for more details on the Super®Bag , and to support their product—select funders will get a growbag of their own! + Harvey Grows The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: city gardening , grow bag , harvey grows , small space gardens , Super®Bag , urban gardening , urban gardens , vertical gardens        

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