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Biophilic Designs, researched by Tim Beatley’s students

Daylighting from Different Angles

By Katherine Gloede Blurring sometimes rigid boundaries between indoors and outdoors is key to biophilic design. Maximization of natural light, or daylighting, is a key ingredient ripe with obvious benefits and unique opportunities. Natural light reduces daytime energy use and fulfills our inherent attraction to affiliate with nature. This particular connection with the outdoors improves [...]

Herbert Dreiseitl on Water Shaping Cities

Last month the Biophilic Cities team had the pleasure of hearing from Herbert Dreiseitl, Director of the Rambøll Liveable Cities Lab and founder of Atelier Dreiseitl, about the sort of projects that take site context to a whole new level by valuing all forms of water, and making them into flowing art which delights citizens. [...]

The Green Alley Project: A University-Community Partnership in Austin, Texas

The idea of greening alleys is becoming more and more prevalent in cities across the globe. Just last year, Tim Beatley wrote about Montreal’s impressive Green Alley program.  From using alleys as stormwater management tools to creating new public green spaces, alleys provide a unique opportunity for nature in an unexpected place. This month I [...]

Using Green Walls to Educate Children

Post written by MARC GRAÑÉN – landscape artist. I began using landscapes as art with the intention to bring nature to children. I realized that the only way to create change was through children. As they spend most of their time at school, that is where I had to start. This is how I began [...]

Green roofs on buses? Phytokinetic says yes!

Post written by MARC GRAÑÉN - landscape artist. PHYTOKINETIC After many years working in landscape projects, increasing green areas in urban environments by using walls and roofs, I noticed how many square meters were not used in other ways. I decided to create the first and unique worldwide-patented system to increase green urban areas, through [...]

Rethinking green living and dying

There was a time in this country when cemeteries were both sacred places of the dead and also one of the few places city dwellers could escape to greener landscapes. Today, one aspect of a greener world that is often overlooked is planning for sustainable resting places for our loved ones. Estimates of known cemeteries [...]

NYC Schoolchildren Designing for Water

New York City is turning to its youngest citizens and their schoolyards in a new, innovative effort to reduce stormwater runoff and enhance recreational space in the city.  A partnership among the Trust for Public Land, the city’s Department of Environmental Protection, the School Construction Authority, and the New York City Council is working to [...]

Design Frameworks for our Feathered Friends

Annually, up to 1 billion birds die in North America by flying into windows and glass walls.  Guided partly by constellations, they are attracted to lights left on at night in our buildings.  Unable to understand reflections or recognize that glass is a barrier, they fatally crash into windows or glass buildings. In the past [...]

Tianjin’s Qiaoyuan Park: Enabling Resilience and a New Aesthetic

China’s cities are rapidly exploding and constantly evolving—struggling to keep pace with a growing population and transforming economy.  This is no surprise.  However, all of this change necessarily means that the urban form is constantly in flux as well.  As regions shift from agriculture to industrial to post-industrial, and small towns beget mega cities, there [...]