SWA and the world’s tallest building *UPDATE*

SWA group designed the 27 acres around the base of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The San Francisco Chronicle has a quick interview with John Wong of SWA about the project and its design.

Read the interview at the [SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle - Sausalito group creates oasis at Burj Khalifa]

Related Article – Dubai City Guide  – 11 Hectare Green Oasis Envelops the foot of Burj Dubai

As part of Burj Dubai’s ‘green’ initiative, the landscaping is irrigated using a unique condensate collection system. Water condensate from the tower’s cooling equipment is recovered, providing an estimated 15 million gallons of water a year, enough to fill 20 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

[SOURCE: Dubai City Guide  - 11 Hectare Green Oasis Envelops the foot of Burj Dubai]

New York luring developers with landscape

New York is creating new parks in Queens at Hunter Point South to lure developers and then tenants to the area. Weiss/Manfredi are the landscape architects for the project and the New York Times recently quoted Michael Manfredi as saying

“The city needed to signal to a fairly skittish development community that it’s serious about this project,” a partner in the New York firm Weiss/Manfredi, the landscape architects on the project along with Thomas Balsley Associates. “Unlike most projects, where open space follows housing and lots of charged debate, here the open space comes first.”

Read the rest of the article in the New York Times

[SOURCE: New York Times - Landscaping as a Seductive First Step]

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Biodome for Chester Zoo submitted for approval

CHESTER Zoo (UK) recently submitted planning applications for its ambitious Natural Vision project.

Following extensive consultations, detailed plans for the Heart of Africa biodome together with expansion of the main entrance and car park have been submitted to Cheshire West and Chester Council.

This hybrid planning application includes detailed drawings for the first phase. Future phases may include a hotel and conservation college.

The biodome could be open to visitors by 2014. Chester Zoo is advised by Hill Dickinson, Aecom and Barton Willmore.

You can download the Public Consultation Boards in pdf  format (includes more renders and plans)

[SOURCE: CHESTER Zoo and Place Northwest via Architect's Journal]

[IMAGE SOURCE: CHESTER Zoo]

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Wetlands restored after long term acid runoff

Australian scientists have announced the world’s first successful large-scale restoration of a coastal wetland being devastated by acid runoff.

The acid crisis at East Trinity began in the 1970s, when developers drained and cleared 800 hectares of tidal wetland to grow sugarcane. This dried out underlying acid sulfate soils causing them to release slugs of acid whenever they were soaked by rain, leading to fish kills and loss of wetlands which alarmed local residents.

A dramatic improvement in environmental conditions has been achieved by researchers working on the trial Hills Creek catchment at the East Trinity site near Cairns in Queensland, using a combination of natural tidal action and strategic treatment with lime.

Mangrove and wetlands are returning, birdlife is flocking to the area and fish abound in creeks that once ran so acid that nothing could survive in them.  Having first demonstrated success in the trial catchment, remediation is underway on the remainder of the site.

[SOURCE: CRCCARE -World-first clean-up of acid wetlands]

Continue reading Wetlands restored after long term acid runoff

Autodesk launches online Green Building Game

Autodesk has launched a online guide and game to educate the public about buildings, carbon footprint through a online game called Retrofits.  Autodesk uses gameplay to educate people about buildings and how retrofitting with double glazing, solar panels and other features can reduce the carbon fooprint of a building.

The guide - Guide to Sustainable Design for Architecture, Engineering & Construction for its Autodesk products is interesting as it creates an easier way to determine what products are best for retrofits, new buildings and determining goals. The list is also useful as BIM becomes more and more apart of a designers toolbox.

[SOURCE: Archdaily - Autodesk Launches Online Game on Green Building]

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