Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has won an international competition to design a new waste-to-energy plant for Copenhagen, Denmark. BIG’s winning entry—which will actually be built and will replace the existing Amagerforbraending plant—improbably caps the huge new facility with a public ski slope. The firm’s design focuses on what it calls “Hedonistic Sustainability – the idea that sustainability is not a burden, but that a sustainable city in fact can improve our quality of life.” Bunny hills, downhill slopes and moguls, designed by Topotek 1 & Man Made Land, will be built into the roof of the building, which will be covered in a ‘recycled synthetic granular’ material instead of snow. The building’s facade will be made up a grid of planters and windows that will make it resemble a mountain from a distance.
The waste-to-energy operation is not expected to release complex or poisonous gases into the the atmosphere, but its smoke stack will release carbon dioxide and water vapor in the form of smoke rings, one ring to mark each ton of carbon dioxide released into the environment. A lucid description of goals and design of the building is available on BIG’s site. Construction is expected to be complete by 2016.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has announced its 2011 Institute Honor Awards for Regional and Urban Design, recognizing “distinguished achievements that involve the expanding role of the architect in urban design, regional and city planning, and community development.” Honored projects are a design for expansion of Beijing’s Central Business District; a plan for reducing the carbon footprint of Chicago’s building stock; a re-stitching of neighborhood fabric in Louisville, Kentucky; a Low Impact Development design manual; a plan for walkability in Farmington, Arkansas; and the Gowanus Canal Sponge Park, a public open space system designed to slow, absorb and filter surface water runoff in Brooklyn. More than 700 submissions were received and 27 projects won awards.
(via The Dirt)
This year’s ONE PRIZE—an annual design and science award to promote green design in cities—is being awarded through a design competition centered around the development of New York City’s “sixth borough,” its bodies of water. Organized by Terreform 1 and Planetary One, the competition aims to advance the City’s potential to develop the world’s largest urban clean technology corridor along its waterways and water bodies, as well its capacity to host a clean tech world expo in 2014. Submissions are to make proposals for both a ‘blue’ transportation network—”a series of green transit hubs incorporating electric passenger ferries, water taxis, bike shares, electric car-share and electric shuttle buses”—and one zone of the expo.
In addition to exposure and participation in the Expo, the winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize. Registration closes April 30th, and Submissions are due May 31st. More details are available in the competition brief.
The Winter/Spring issue of the Freshkills Park newsletter, Fresh Perspectives, is up on the official Parks homepage for Freshkills Park. In this issue are a walk-through of the design for the first phase of South Park, a primer on composting toilets and how they work, and a history and guide to wetlands at the Freshkills Park site.
We put this newsletter out every six months and distribute hard copies to various parks and cultural institutions throughout the City, in addition to handing them out on our public bus tours of the Freshkills Park site. Digital archives of past newsletters are available on the homepage, under the ‘More Information’ tab.
The NYC Department of Parks & Recreation and the Fellows of the Design Trust for Public Space have prepared and released a manual called “High Performance Landscape Guidelines: 21st Century Parks for NYC.” It’s a comprehensive design and construction manual for sustainable parks and open spaces and will henceforth guide the design, construction and maintenance of New York City parks, in alignment with Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC 2030.
The “Guidelines” will ensure that NYC’s parks clean our air and absorb storm water, reduce the urban heat island effect, provide habitat, and address the challenges of climate change. This manual contains hundreds of best practices including:
- Keeping rain water within parks for the use of plantings rather than sending it to sewers.
- Increasing the resiliency of plantings by considering the soil, the effects of climate change, the plant type and future maintenance needs.
- Designing to save labor, reduce operating expenses and decrease the frequency of capital replacement.
This is a fantastic guide specifically for New York City parks, but would also be useful to any parks system interested in integrating sustainable practice into the core of its operations. There is also a great section of case studies at the end of the document that features the ecological restoration of Pennsylvania and Fountain Avenue Landfills, Bronx River tidal marsh restoration efforts and the 5 Boro Green Roof complex, among other projects.
A beloved cultural landmark, Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport was the world’s first passenger airport and the site of airlifts during the Berlin Blockade. After the site was closed to air traffic in 2008, the city held a design competition to solicit proposals reimagining the site as a public space incorporating the existing runways and beautiful terminal buildings. Six finalists were selected from nearly 80 proposals, designing for activities like urban farming and beekeeping, a nature park, edible gardens, sports facilities and skate parks. The winning design will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
A new ferry equipped with emission-reducing technologies will soon make its appearance in New York Harbor, transporting visitors to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The 600-passenger New York Hornblower Hybrid will be powered by a combination of hydrogen fuel cells, solar panels, wind turbines and diesel engines that meet EPA Tier II emissions standards. In addition to using sustainable energy, the Hornblower will be outfitted in a number of environmentally sensitive materials: recycled glass countertops, LEED-certified carpet and aluminum wall coverings, LED lighting and video screens, low-VOC paints for the boat’s exterior. The developers of the hybrid ferry have also partnered with the EPA in the testing of copper-free and other alternative paint formulas that might have lesser impacts on marine ecosystems. The ferry is being built by Derecktor Shipyards in Connecticut, and its construction is expected to be completed by April 2011.
While there have been no plans announced for a major overhaul of the Staten Island Ferry fleet, retrofits that started in 2005 have reduced particulate emissions, nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide from several of the ferries.
Landscape architecture and urban design firm James Corner Field Operations, designers of the master plan and early projects for Freshkills Park as well as of the High Line, have garnered another high-profile commission: designing a new nine-acre park on Seattle’s waterfront. The Washington State Department of Transportation plans to replace the aging Alaskan Way Viaduct—a double-decked elevated expressway that is one of two major north-south corridors in Seattle—with a deep-bore tunnel running underground. After the viaduct’s slated demolition in 2016, the City envisions developing a waterfront with open space, a tree-lined boulevard and possibly beaches for use as kayak launches and for kite flying. The waterfront strip could connect Seattle landmarks including Pike Place Market, the Seattle Aquarium, Pioneer Square, sports stadiums and the Olympic Sculpture Park.
JCFO was among four finalists for the $830 million waterfront redevelopment project, which will include relocation of utilities as well as sea wall contruction. Together with the Central Waterfront Partnerships Committee, the firm will now undertake a planning process including public and specific stakeholder meetings that will proceed for the next few years. Design work will begin next month, with a conceptual plan to be developed in 2012. Design will be finalized by 2015.
(via The Dirt)
Sneak Peak was a huge success! About 1800 people joined us at the Freshkills Park site on Sunday to make and fly kites, canoe in the creeks, walk the site with an expert, ride a pony, pet a goat, make a bag or a birdhouse, learn about composting and recycling and energy efficiency, receive a free bike helmet or fitting, enjoy the fun music, cool crafts and awesome food and generally celebrate the potential of this fascinating and amazing site. The weather was incredible, and everyone was in good spirits.
To be honest, 1800 was a much bigger crowd than we anticipated for this event. Never having held an event at the Freshkills Park site before meant that we had no baseline to gauge real participation. We were astonished and energized by the volume of enthusiasm and interest in the park project, and we loved to see what a great time visitors were having. We’re already looking forward to the next big event we can put on at the site. More on that as it develops.
We’ve uploaded our own photos to flickr, but these definitely don’t get at everything there was to see. There were so many people with cameras, and we would love to see—and to share—those photos! Please share them with us, either by e-mail or by adding your photos to our flickr group pool for Sneak Peak.
Open House New York, the weekend look inside what are normally closed doors of New York City’s architectural and design fascinatia, takes place Saturday and Sunday, October 9th and 10th this year. Volunteers are needed. Volunteers would assist with the weekend’s many programs, including tours, site-specific performances and discussions. Shifts are approximately four hours long and require a training session. Volunteers will also be able to skip the line at any non-reservation only event. Sites opened for the weekend in the past have included the High Bridge Water Tower, the Atlantic Avenue Tunnel, the Grand Lodge of Masons on 23rd Street in Manhattan and a host of architects’ offices, private homes and institutions across the five boroughs, including Freshkills Park, which will participate for its fourth consecutive year.