Green roof with bee hotel tops energy-neutral fair trade building in the Netherlands

May 25, 2017 by  
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Fair trade fruits and vegetables aren’t the only things coming and going at Nature’s Pride—buzzing bees and birds are also flocking to the sustainable distribution hub. Paul de Ruiter Architects designed the giant green-roofed facility in Maasdijk, where it serves as one of the largest Dutch importers of exotic fruits and vegetables. As a recipient of a BREEAM Excellent certificate, Nature’s Pride is also one of the top five most sustainable distribution centers in Western Europe. The design of the 37,000-square-meter Nature’s Pride facility is guided by the company’s philosophy for openness and transparency. The energy-neutral building features a flexible structure that can be modified with minimal interventions. “Recesses in the floor can easily be closed, emergency staircases can be moved and the floor at the packaging department can be loaded more heavily,” write the architects. “All together it enables to building to fulfill a completely different function if required in the future.” Related: Former museum in Rotterdam is transformed into a luxury energy-saving villa Produce enters the distribution center via the north side’s fourteen loading docks and is transported out on the east side. Glazing wraps around the building to let in natural light. The large roof contains room for parking and electric vehicle charging stations. The building also includes a 2,000-square-meter green roof with a bee hotel and a butterfly roof garden. Stormwater runoff is collected and reused for flushing the toilets and cleaning operations. + Paul de Ruiter Architects Images by Jeroen Musch

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Green roof with bee hotel tops energy-neutral fair trade building in the Netherlands

Plastic waste pop-up pavilion rethinks recycling in the Netherlands

May 25, 2017 by  
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Plastic waste takes on new life in the PET Pavilion, a temporary structure that popped up in a public park in Enschede, The Netherlands. Project.DWG and LOOS.FM designed the 227-square-meter ephemeral pavilion to spark dialogue on topics relating to recycling and sustainable building. The experimental pavilion serves as an educational gathering space and can be easily dismantled for relocation within a day. The pavilion bears draws inspiration from Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Farnsworth House with its steel framework and floor-to-ceiling transparent walls. Over 40,000 plastic bottles are sandwiched between the pavilion’s double-walled transparent corrugated sheets, creating a curtain of crumpled bottles that turn the pavilion into an “abstract lantern” at night. The elevated pavilion also includes a staircase and ramp covered with 25,000 bottle caps and a divider wall filled with 8,000 body wash containers. “It is really confronting when you encounter the huge piles of waste up close,” write the designers. “That’s something we wanted to work with. ‘Something’ became a pavilion with monumental walls of pet bottles. Dismountable and temporary, with the plot in loan. With a temporary structure you bypass complicated regulation. Society is changing. To build for eternity, is an empty claim. Temporality means freedom.” Related: Dissolvable bioplastic bags from Bali are safe enough to drink The PET pavilion is currently located in a temporary park on the grounds of the former Robson pajamas in Enschede. The building is used to host events, from talks to galleries, and also includes a bar and winter garden. The pavilion will be moved to an as yet undetermined site at the end of 2017. + Project.DWG + LOOS.FM Images via Project.DWG , art by Martin Oostenrijk, Jelle de Graaf, and André Boone

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Plastic waste pop-up pavilion rethinks recycling in the Netherlands

The Iron Curtain Stopped Invasive Species

January 8, 2010 by  
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Image credit: duluoz cats /Flickr At the end of Word War II, the proverbial “Iron Curtain” fell between Western Europe and the Soviet Union. The barrier, which was as much a real obstacle—defended by soldiers and tanks—as it was a symbolic divide, prevented travel, trade, and communication between the two halves of the continent

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The Iron Curtain Stopped Invasive Species

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