green architecture

This is kind of what I imagine the future being, since we will need housing for the growing population, so instead of getting rid of greenry all together to make room, we will have green roofs everywhere! so when you take a stroll it will be from roof to roof, and with all the greenry, it will clean the toxics in the air! Hopefully I can work on a project like this in school.

Green roofs may be a newer phenomenon in many places, but Norwegians have been planting greenery atop their houses for hundreds of years. Some have flowers mixed in with grass, and a few even have small trees. The verdant roofs have many advantages like the fact that they help stabilize homes, provide good insulation and are long-lasting.

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I’ve seen this house a few times online/in books but none have been photographed as well to capture the interior. Good ol’ Air BnB! :)

There are many aspects of this Cob House I like - as my general goal is to create an almost “modernist” take on Cob…stepping away from the “Hobbity” vibe we see so often.


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This DIY, year-round greenhouse was designed by Francis Gendron, and it’s ethos is to provide you with an indoor garden no matter what the season or weather outside.

Called “The Greenhouse of the Future”, this walipini-style semi-underground structure can provide enough of a micro-climate inside to enable growth, especially in colder climates.

The greenhouses are easily made from salvaged materials, such as reclaimed metal sheeting also incorporating aspects of earthship construction by using discarded tyres. Indeed Francis himself graduated from architect Michael Reynolds’ Earthship Academy in 2012.

As we become more socially conscious about how and where our food is derived, so too do we look to try and become more personally involved in its production. In achieving this, our location on the planet will greatly inform what can be grown.

According to Gendron, “…the questions people should ask themselves… 

  • Where do I live? 
  • What’s the climate like?
  • How long do I want to produce food throughout the year (6 months, 8 months, or the full year)?
  • Do I have access to a sunny place where I can build?
  • Do I want more than just food production?
    For example, you may want a beautiful place to relax in the sun during the winter.”

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The semi-underground structure of the greenhouse design protects it from strong winds, and heavy snows in addition to benefitting from the passive geothermal energy of the earth.

Gendron has produced a film, ebook and provides plans and designs for building your won greenhouse, which are available here for purchase and download. You can also watch the trailer for the film here.

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Francis Gendron is a public speaker, educator, and passionate promoter of an ethical, resilient and sustainable future.

Francis spent many years as an outdoor guide teaching leadership, outdoor and survival skills in some of Canada’s wildest areas before he became the first graduate of the Earthship Academy in Taos, New Mexico, directed by renowned architect Michael Reynolds. He has led over 100 seminars on the philosophy and practical skills behind the Earthship concept.

He started The Greenhouse of the Future project to create a resilient, organic and local food production solution for any climate.
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Second Life: The Heineken WOBO Doubles as Beer Bottle and Brick

Fifty years ago, Heineken developed a revolutionary and sustainable design solution to give its beer bottles a second life: as an architectural brick. The concept arose after brewing magnate Alfred Heineken visited Curacao during a world tour of his factories in 1960. He was struck by the amount of beer bottles—many bearing his name—littering the beaches and the lack of affordable building materials for residents. In a stroke of genius (or madness), Heineken realized both problems could be solved if beer bottles could be reused as structural building components. Enlisting the help of Dutch architect N. John Habraken, Heineken created a new bottled design—dubbed the Heineken WOBO (World Bottle)—that doubled as a drinking vessel and a brick. As author and architecture critic Martin Pawley notes, the WOBO was “the first mass production container ever designed from the outset for secondary use as a building component.“ The new squared off bottle was both inter-locking and self-aligning, allowing it to nestle seamlessly and snugly into adjoining "bricks.” With Habraken’s design, a 10 by 10 foot hut could be constructed with 1,000 WOBO bottles. Though a test run of 100,000 bottles was produced in 1963, the marketing department’s worries about liabilities doomed the project. The WOBO was subsequently and unceremoniously retired. Though only two official WOBO buildings remain, both on the Heineken estate in Noordwijk near Amsterdam, the concept remains a powerful and inspiring one. Indeed, the experiment is a reminder of how a major corporation might seriously take on sustainability in an innovative way.

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Architect Michael Pawlyn is one of the designers behind the Eden Project, a cluster of biodomes built in a 160-year-old clay quarry in Cornwall, England. Together, these biodomes house thousands of plant species from all over the world.

In a talk at TEDxLondonCity2.0, Pawlyn shows how he builds structures that mimic nature – from bird skulls to beetle wings, from slime mold to termite mounds.

For the Eden Project, Pawlyn’s team studied the structure of honeycomb. dragonfly wings, and bubbles.

Watch the whole talk here>>

(Photos via Inhabitat)