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thoughts, ideas + dialogues on urban revitalization, smart growth + neighborhood development
Curated by Lauren Moss
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HAO’s proposal to revive Brooklyn’s Domino Sugar Factory into cultural destination

HAO’s proposal to revive Brooklyn’s Domino Sugar Factory into cultural destination | green streets | Scoop.it

Holm Architecture Office was recently commissioned for an idea proposal to revive the existing buildings of the Domino Sugar Factory in the Williamsburg neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York. The factory opened in 1856 and was once the sugar processing center of the U.S. before it shut down in 2004. The factory has been empty since then.

HAO's proposal for the Domino Culture Factory combines public and private programming that regenerates the abandoned factory into a cultural and educational destination for local communities and all who visit.

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Culture, Coffee & Repurposed Pallets: Urban Coffee Farm and Brew Bar at Melbourne's Food & Wine Festival

Culture, Coffee & Repurposed Pallets: Urban Coffee Farm and Brew Bar at Melbourne's Food & Wine Festival | green streets | Scoop.it

Designed for the 2013 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, the Urban Coffee Farm and Brew Bar by HASSELL attempts to play on this element of intrigue and surprise, creating an unexpected landscape in a familiar urban setting.

A total of 125 coffee trees from a disused coffee plantation in New South Wales and over 2,000 tropical plants were used to create the effect. At the end of the festival next year, the tropical plants will be given back to the nursery that donated them, and the coffee trees will be replanted in Victoria. About 1,500 pallets were also donated for the Festival, these will also be returned to the owner and used again once the Festival is over. The shipping containers which are the undercover areas on the Farm were at the end of their life so this is their final destination.

Find more details and photos at the link.

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Architectural Reclamation: Creating a More Sustainable Built Environment

Architectural Reclamation: Creating a More Sustainable Built Environment | green streets | Scoop.it
Today's complex environmental problems require innovative solutions from all parties involved, with one increasingly popular strategy involving recycled and reused materials in architectural practice.

An increasingly popular strategy is to recycle and reuse materials in architectural practice. A variety of materials receive the reuse treatment: shipping containers are all the rage in both residential and commercial architecture, while reclaimed timber has seen increasing popularity in architecture as well as interior design. When architects utilise material reclamation in their buildings, it is a sign that there is an awareness that the built environment must respond adequately to the challenges of environmental degradation...


Read the complete article for more details, case studies and links regarding large-scale material reuse, reclamation projects and sustainable building strategies.

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Can the Olympics Bring Affordable Housing to London?

Can the Olympics Bring Affordable Housing to London? | green streets | Scoop.it
By 2031, this summer's Olympic site should be a dense checkerboard of housing and parkland.

The afterlife of London’s Olympic Park was partially confirmed last week, when officials agreed to plans for the construction of a new neighborhood on part of its site once this summer's games are over.

Called Chobham Manor, the 960-home neighborhood should be ready by autumn 2013, and will cover the current location of the Olympic basketball court (plus, one imagines, a little bit more of the park). It’s just the beginning of plans to cover London’s Lower Lea Valley area with badly needed new housing – four other neighborhoods providing a total of 6,800 homes are also in the pipeline, and by 2031, the former Olympic site should be a dense checkerboard of housing and parkland.

In an area that currently attracts few professionals with children, the new neighborhood aims to be especially family friendly, with four schools included in the blueprints. The plan so far is to have 35 percent of its housing fixed at affordable rents, making some of it suitable for people already living in this lower income area...

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Park life: the evolving approach to designing urban public space

Park life: the evolving approach to designing urban public space | green streets | Scoop.it

It could be argued that the pinnacle of urban landscape architecture was reached in seventeenth century France and the French formal gardens of Jacques Boyceau and André Le Nôtre, or in Britain in the ninenteenth century, when Joseph Paxton and John Nash were transforming former Royal Hunting grounds into places for Victorian gentry to promenade.

Contemporary urban architects and designers are rarely afforded the same amount of space, money and time as their antecedents and are more often tasked with transforming abandoned plots, redundant structures or characterless inner city areas into suitable places for public recreation. Here, Architonic looks at some recent successes that add value to their surroundings by pushing the boundaries of park design.

Finding new spaces in towns and cities that can be turned into communal parks is extremely difficult with every available plot in such high demand and the reuse or re-appropriation of existing land has become a popular alternative. The shining example of this practice is New York’s hugely popular High Line development, which has converted a disused freight rail line elevated above the streets of Manhattan into a popular park and walkway...

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Scaling the Urban Future by Blending the Urban Past | Sustainable Cities Collective

Scaling the Urban Future by Blending the Urban Past | Sustainable Cities Collective | green streets | Scoop.it

Recently, the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Seattle-based Preservation Green Lab made urbanist media headlines (including Emily Badger’s January 25 Atlantic Cities story) with a report stating the environmental benefits of green retrofits of historic buildings, as compared to new, state-of-the-art, energy-efficient construction. In addition, a local church restored as townhouses joined the list of intriguing Seattle adaptive reuse projects typical of national trends.

 

As our surroundings evolve, can we create incentives and inspiration for transformational places that are sustainable in form, function and attention to the past? I have touched on these questions before, when highlighting hill towns as placemaking icons and profiling Italy’s re-emerging Matera, the UNESCO World Heritage site also termed “the sustainable city of stone” (in The Atlantic last year)...

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Disused Steel Mill Yard In Luxembourg Undergoes Smart Redesign Without Forgetting Its Past

Disused Steel Mill Yard In Luxembourg Undergoes Smart Redesign Without Forgetting Its Past | green streets | Scoop.it

Similar to New York City's Highline, this disused and grim industrial area in the south of Luxembourg has been revived into a pleasant public space without deleting its past. 

LUX Stahlhof Belval-Ouest is an urban oasis between residential buildings and strange looking furnaces from the former steel industry. The space has pretty much been conserved and made friendly by incorporating plants and creating seating areas into the structures. The old industrial elements have basically been left in place as well as mosses and birch, and new designs and plants have been added to revive the space.

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Reinterpreting Green Space in West London

Reinterpreting Green Space in West London | green streets | Scoop.it
With pressure on urban space increasing as populations grow and building becomes more intensive, will gardens be a less common sight in future cities? Those interested in this subject might enjoy the upcoming Serpentine Gallery's Garden Marathon.
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Transforming Historic Urban Space into a Vibrant Cultural District

Transforming Historic Urban Space into a Vibrant Cultural District | green streets | Scoop.it
As the needs of cities change, older buildings can find themselves redundant. The challenge is to find a new purpose for these buildings, one which is historically respectful but meets the modern needs of a city.
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Turning Power Plants Into Green Neighborhood Development

Turning Power Plants Into Green Neighborhood Development | green streets | Scoop.it

Industry analysts predict that environmental and economic factors will lead to the retirement of dozens of aging coal-fired power plants in the coming decade. Many of these occupy important locations in cities, often with valuable access to waterfronts. According to a new report, these sites present tremendous opportunities for new civic and private uses such as riverfront housing, shops, and offices -- as well as museums, parks, and other community amenities.

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Linear Parks: Emergent Opportunities For Green Links

Linear Parks: Emergent Opportunities For Green Links | green streets | Scoop.it

Due to the recent redevelopment of the High Line and Hudson River Parks, great attention and excitement is heating up around the idea of linear parks. These spaces are particularly interesting in that they often augment or re-use existing infrastructure of different scales and types, like railroad tracks, canals, natural waterways, highways, and arterial roads. 

Linear parks are also unique in that they do not just turn underused paths into pedestrian-friendly green space, but they also serve as great catalysts for change and investment in large stretches of the city, benefiting multiple neighborhoods along their routes.

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Plant-filled amphitheatre proposed for the High Line's final stretch

Plant-filled amphitheatre proposed for the High Line's final stretch | green streets | Scoop.it
New images unveiled this week reveal that the third and final phase of New York's High Line park will feature an enclosed amphitheatre filled with plants.

The bowl-shaped structure will create a new north-east gateway to the popular park - created across an abandoned elevated railway by architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro, landscape architects James Corner Field Operations and planting designer Piet Oudolf - and will form part of a new stretch wrapping around New York's old freight train yards. Named The Spur, the structure will be positioned at the widest point of the High Line, across the intersection of 10th Avenue and West 30th Street, and is conceived as "an immersive experience of nature.

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Designer turns city fixtures into instant playgrounds

Designer turns city fixtures into instant playgrounds | green streets | Scoop.it

Dutch designer Thor ter Kulve creates tweaks for everyday city fixtures, temporarily imbuing them with childlike zest.


A boring light pole becomes a swing, for instance, and a fire hydrant becomes a fountain.

The fact that his inventions are temporary — “They are set up for a few hours and then removed without damaging the structure it was attached to,” PSFK says — doesn’t lessen their ability to charm or make the observer see the city in a new way.


From the designer:

Thanks to [these designs], dull and derelict places become hangouts of choice…It’s my strong belief that in a time of economic hardship and individual isolation, we should address ourselves to public space as a collectively owned domain and possible ways to use it to our joint benefit.

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Beautifying New York With Dumpster Gardens...

Beautifying New York With Dumpster Gardens... | green streets | Scoop.it
Rubbish-bin gardens for the concrete jungle that is New York.

Most folks would not be happy if they walked outside one morning and found a dumpster full of dirt and vegetal matter in front of their home. But then again, most folks don't live in the concrete desert of New York, where any spot of green is a welcome sight.

Michael Bernstein's been pushing for New Yorkers to adopt these rubbish-bin gardens for more than a decade, after having exhibited a prototype in 2001 at Long Island City's Sculpture Center. He developed the idea while living in Dumbo, where he operated a rooftop garden and a sidewalk vegetable stand amid a colorless thicket of buildings and overpasses.

"I was struck by how there are no trees down there," Bernstein says. "I liked the idea that this could be a portable green space that's transported place to place. If you live in an urban place with no trees, you can get one of these delivered to your house. It's like a portable forest."

The designer named his invention the Ten Yards project in reference to the payload capacity of the dumpsters...

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Liam Muller's curator insight, February 18, 2013 8:57 PM

1011 rotue 1 and new jersey turnpike elizabeth nj at 1011 rotue 1 and new jersey turnpike elizabeth nj dumpster at City of Jersey

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“Dance floor” Recreation and Memorial Park | SAGRA Architects

“Dance floor” Recreation and Memorial Park | SAGRA Architects | green streets | Scoop.it

The site is situated in the Karancs-Medves landscape area in North-East Hungary. Around and in the city of Salgótarján, the memorials, geological and mining attractions form a hiking trail. Along this trail is set the “Dance floor” Recreation and Memorial Park, a site is embraced by the surrounding hills and huge hillside trees. The architectural concept aimed to preserve and strengthen this special character of the place, so the park would function as an exhibition for the mining memorials and as a natural recreational area. The organizing element in the park is a wall providing covered space. This space can be used for exhibitions and performances. Open air theatre may also function here, the covered space is used for stage and the “Dance floor” as auditorium.

Besides the “Dance floor” Recreation and Memorial Park, Gusztav Tunnel Entrance no. 4 reconstruction is another attraction along the hiking trail. The tunnel is out of use, and this entrance imploded and was closed with a wall at 15 metres from the entrance. The imploded part is planned to be reconstructed and transformed into a tourist attraction. The information wall introduces the visitors into the basics of mining and the history of Gusztav Tunnel. Seating is placed where visitors can stop and rest and see old mining tools, machines and an ancient bogie on a railway track.

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Re-purposing Sydney’s monorail

Re-purposing Sydney’s monorail | green streets | Scoop.it

Recently, the NSW government announced that Sydney’s monorail infrastructure will be demolished only 24 years after it went into service. David Vago, Principal of habitation believes that this is a missed opportunity to retrofit the Monorail structure for a pedestrian focused open space similar to the High-Line in New York.

habitation proposes to retrofit the existing Sydney Monorail structure into a continuous above-ground path through the city. Vago sees the proposal as embracing “the principles set out by the City of Sydney and embrace the agenda and ideas championed in 2030 Sustainable Sydney;”. The 3.6km loop proposal called the High-Lane would become an uninterrupted route though the city. Vago believes that the path “will appeal to recreational runners, walkers, joggers, office-workers, parents with prams and tourists who yearn to see the city from a new perspective.”

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Incheon stadium designed to turn into park after Asian Games

Incheon stadium designed to turn into park after Asian Games | green streets | Scoop.it

The Incheon main stadium being built for the 2014 Asian Games will be transformed into a public park after the sports festival, demonstrating a sustainable design in stadiums in Asia, the architecture firm that designed it has said.

The new stadium will hold 70,000 people for the games, but it can reduce down to a single-sided grandstand for 30,000 afterwards and be turned into a park.

“If the social legacy is done the way it was initially planned, I think the world will sit up and notice that Korea is leading the way in delivering a sports project legacy,” Andrew James, Populous’ senior principal, told The Korea Herald.

The key factor for the stadium’s success after the games will be linking it into the surrounding parklands, transforming it into an open and accessible building for everyone to enjoy. Populous is working on the project with local firm Heerim Architects and Planners.

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Vinnie's curator insight, February 18, 2015 12:42 AM

"Recycleable" stadium design from Korea. After planned use,mstadium can be converted into a park or a smaller venue.

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Former Malt Factory in Berlin to Become Aquaponic Rooftop Farm

Former Malt Factory in Berlin to Become Aquaponic Rooftop Farm | green streets | Scoop.it

The concept of urban agriculture is fast taking root in our cities, and while images of towering vertical farms with high-altitude pastures and verdant exteriors may captivate us with their fantastical designs, the greatest leaps and bounds in this area stem from simple, tried and true farming methods and adaptive reuse of pre-existing structures. The latest “farm of the future” on the horizon: the Frisch vom Dach, or the Fresh from the Roof project in Berlin. Der Spiegel recently reported on the efforts of three German entrepreneurs to transform the expansive rooftop of a former malt factory in Berlin into a sustainable urban farm projected to produce tons of vegetables and fish for the city each month.

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Transforming Historic Urban Space Into A Vibrant Cultural District

Transforming Historic Urban Space Into A Vibrant Cultural District | green streets | Scoop.it

As the needs of cities change, older buildings can find themselves a bit redundant. The challenge for urban areas is to find a new purpose for these buildings, one which is historically respectful but at the same time creates a space that meets the modern needs of a city. This is exactly what has happened in Toronto, where a former distillery has been transformed into a varied, vibrant, and immensely popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

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Old Parking Meters to Become Bicycle Racks in New York

Old Parking Meters to Become Bicycle Racks in New York | green streets | Scoop.it

New York City is removing its last single-space parking meter in Manhattan today, The New York Times reports. Instead of collecting parking fees for individual spots, the New York City Department of Transportation is converting to Muni-Meters that take up less space on sidewalks and have a better record on vandalism.

More interestingly, the old single-space parking meters will be dismantled and the poles will be repurposed as bicycle racks, the NYT reports.

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Projects That Give Urban Places A New Lease On Life

Projects That Give Urban Places A New Lease On Life | green streets | Scoop.it

The term “alt use” has become a catchall encompassing all sorts of clever upcycling of everything from tree stumps to discarded airplanes. And if you keep your eyes open, there is no shortage of fantastic projects creating new and inventive uses for the spaces we move through daily, be they the street corner, the laundromat or our homes.

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