Green Roof as Art - Tops New Hyde Park Art Center

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A Green Roof as art and other art projects are now on display at the brand new Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago, IL.

To help celebrate the opening of its new location, Chicago’s Hyde Park Art Center asked area artists to create new work for the local community to enjoy.

One of the projects that has garnered considerable attention — including a visit by the city’s Mayor, Richard M. Daley — is the building’s Green roof.

“It’s an art project, called Bullseye, by local artist Stuart Keeler who worked in collaboration with Weston Solutions®, Inc., GreenGrid® Green Roof System, and Midwest Groundcovers,” says Allison Peters, the Center’s Director of Exhibitions. “It is part of the Center’s attempt to operate in a more sustainable manner and, even more, to show the community how this can be accomplished.”

A Green roof involves the placing of low-maintenance, hearty plants, grasses, and other vegetation into 2-inchs to 6-inch of soil on top of the existing roof.

Some Green roofs are built right on the roof, while others use a modular system. With a modular system, the Green roof and its components are assembled at a nursery and planted into modules made of 60 percent recycled plastic.

The modules are then laid out atop the building’s existing roof. This system tends to be more cost effective and faster to install. In fact, the center’s Green roof only took 14 hours to install.

Once in place, Green roofs help lower heating and cooling energy costs, quiet a facility, reduce storm water runoff, produce oxygen, and provide a nice retreat for birds and butterflies, especially in urban settings.

The German Connection

According to Keeler, he first saw Green roofs while working in Germany. “From my studio, I could see several Green roofs on nearby buildings,” the artist says. “Viewing them was pleasing and inspiring.”

The artist says the Green roof as art was created for the Center’s exhibition to help make a statement about sustainability and protecting the environment. “One of my goals with my art is to be a social catalyst—helping people see that architecture, buildings, and science can all work together to protect our planet.”

To view the Green roof and other art projects that are part of the exhibition Takeover (April 24 – June 11, 2006), visit the Hyde Park Art Center at 5020 South Cornell Ave. Chicago, IL; Call 773.324.5520. Or visit http://www.hydeparkart.org.

To learn more about Green roofs, including Do-it-Yourself (DIY) Green roofs, visit Garden in a City show, to be presented by the Chicago Park District, Chicago, IL, May 13–21, 2006, in the city’s Grant Park.

About Weston Solutions, Inc.

Weston Solutions, Inc. is an employee-owned leading environment and redevelopment firm, delivering comprehensive solutions to complex problems for industry and government worldwide. The company’s services encompass environmental remediation, redevelopment, and management and compliance. Its emphasis on restoring resource efficiency to its clients’ operations — including land, air, water, facilities and staff — ensures that clients derive maximum value from their resources.

For more information, visit the WESTON Web site at http://www.westonsolutions.com/.

For more information and photos of the GreenGrid® Green Roof System, visit http://www.greengridroofs.com or contact Sandra McCullough in WESTON’s Chicago office at (312)424-3306; Andy Harris in Glastonbury, CT at (860)368-3211; or Steve Fuller in Seattle, WA at (206)521-7652.

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Robert Kravitz
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