Here is a video of green architecture ideas from around the world. They are very 1970’s, pot smoking from outer space sort of structures IMO.
But they make me think about green architecture possibilities in Brooklyn. Our canvas is the brownstone. What normal contractors paint on it is currently pretty standard stuff. I ask myself, how can we incorporate some of these more radical and forward thinking green architectural ideas into the green brownstone renovation.
I would really like to see a more equal balance between nature and concrete. Right now we have brick, concrete and sheet rock as taking up most of the Brooklyn space. A couple planted trees and shrubs scatter streets and yards but they are secondary, put in later once the structures are built. The most desirable blocks are those where the trees and gardens have become so dominant that they balance out the buildings.
“No house should ever be on any hill or anything. It should be of the hill, belonging to it, so hill and house could live together each the happier for the other.”
— Frank Lloyd Wright.
“There is no such thing as a return to nature. because there is no such thing as a departure from it. The phrase reminds me of the slightly intoxicated gentleman who gets up from his own dining room and declares firmly that he must be getting home.”
— G.K. Chesterton.
Where is the hill in Brooklyn? It is almost extinct, flattened by two hundred years and armies of builders. The exotic and lush Brooklyn of four hundred years ago is not visible any more. But nature is not gone and nature is resilient. It is still beneath our feet, beneath a couple inches of concrete.
All we have to do is move aside a little to give it space. The rest it will do on its own.
As a Brooklyn green design build company we are constantly looking for ways to build more green into the project, to the point where our primary client is nature, where we are almost brought into the project as nature’s representative to balance out the human centric focus of building.
This does not mean simply throwing plants everywhere. A jungle is not the solution. The goal is a brownstone that lives more as an organic organism than a machine of stone and metal. To achieve this requires a wealth of knowledge, a balance between fantastical idealism and technical genius.
How are we doing? We’re doing our best 🙂