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IT GROWS ON YOU

15/05/2013

Great examples of cities a bit greener Happy mid week, dears :) As most of you probably know, I live in Sofia. An European capital, they tell me. But it sure doesn`t look like one, to be honest. Why? Well, if you`ve ever been in Sofia you would know what I mean. Not that our city is not charming in its own way, nope, there are thousands of little things I adore. But not so many big things. Not at all. And because today I went for a long walk I got to thinking about the million and one things the municipality could do to turn Sofia into a greener city. It wouldn`t take that much resources, but for sure will make a huge difference. Maybe soon. I`m an optimist. Until then, here are some examples of what people have done in other places: Vertical gardens in Milan

bosco-verticaleArchitect Stefano Boeri is behind this project to spread 10, 000 square meters of plants in the form of vertical vegetation. Over the 45 floors of two residential buildings tens of trees will provide shade in the summer and warm in the winter by the natural sunlight.

Singapore Gardens by the Bay Gardens by the Bay is a 250-acre incredible public space in Singapore with gardens, bridges, skywalks, parks and plants. The centerpiece are the two climate-controlled biomes; one is called Cloud Forest and the other Flower Dome. Both equal the size of 4 football fields and the horticultural waste will feed a massive steam turbine that in turn generates the electricity needed to keep climate-control them. Park in the sky

hlfingersofgrass There is not enough room for a new park in the city although both it and its citizens desperately need one? Well, sky is the limit, proved starchitects Diller Scofidio+Renfro by building a beautiful public park on top of the skeleton of an old rail system, running from Gansevoort Street to West 34th Street on Manhattan’s West Side.

Grass lined railways

7-light-rail-train Barcelona, Strasbourg and Frankfurt are just a few of the European cities that have already implemented this so easy but yet amazingly beautiful and sustainable for the whole city practice. Trams gliding on grass is not only an example of excellent urban design but they also reduce the urban heat island effect, reduce pollution, provide a permeable surface for storm water to infiltrate.

The greenest mall

largest-vertical-garden-in-the-world-rozzano-italy-shopping-center-6 And while on the subject of vertical gardens, here is the world`s largest vertical garden on a shopping mall`s façade. It is in the town of Rozzano, covering a surface of 13,600 square feet with a total of 44,000 plants. It reduces ambient noise, regulates the temperature inside the mall thus saving energy and absorbs carbon dioxide. Shopping center director Simone Rao said: "This is sustainable architecture, which can combine beauty with energy saving while respecting the environment." Stay tuned for more examples on great urban practices for sustainable development.