Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - 1

FROM THE FOUNDER

AWESTRUCK BY
BIOPHILIC DESIGN
I

convinced three of my closest friends to
embark upon a magnificent journey to
celebrate big round numbers associated
with our birthdays. So off we went to
Las Vegas, where instead of visiting the
slot machines, we crossed the tarmac of
the regional airport in 119o F weather.
Then we boarded a small plane that flew
us over to Marble Canyon, the launching
pad for rafting trips down the Grand
Canyon. The view from the plane was
awesome, a biophilic explosion of ribbons
of undulating multi-colored layers of
ragged rock stretching out in all directions
to the horizon and below us. Not a
telephone pole or a building in sight. It
was a magnificent birds eye view. This
sense of awe, my friend and colleague
Bill Browning recently told me, turns
out to be newly confirmed by science as
its own element or principle of biophilic
design. It's what occurs in our brains
when our circuits are literally overloaded
by something that takes our breath away,
something larger than life. It's a common
experience for Grand Canyon visitors.
We were immersed in the Canyon with
awesome views unfolding before us for the
thirteen days as we paddled those frigid and
often turbulent waters, watching the walls
of the canyon rise up as we descended. "It's
like nature's sculpture garden and she's
been at work for millions of years," I told
my friends several days into the trip. "It's
like a $500 a night hotel view, everywhere
you look," said another friend, both of
us trying to articulate an indescribable
experience.
LIVINGARCHITECTUREMONITOR.COM

There's a biophilic element of 'prospect'
(the ability to see in the distance), I
suspect, associated with 'awe'. I recently
experienced this in Vancouver after the
Green Roof and Wall Market Development
Workshop last December. With some
colleagues, I was standing on the Vancouver
Convention Center green roof near the
outer edge overlooking Coal Harbor and
Stanley Park to my left and the Coastal
Mountains rising up in front of me. It
was a rare and truly awesome view! (see
background image)
We are hardwired to seek out, enjoy
and benefit from natural environments
that have, over millennia, facilitated our
ongoing evolution and survival on earth.
Perhaps the most powerful illustration
of biophilia is the joy one feels from
experiencing running water from a forest
stream, because this signifies that it is
probably safe to drink and may hold the
promise of food. Certified Forest Therapy
Guide Jamie Trost, in his article in this
issue shares with us how to go about being
in a forest environment so as to achieve
the greatest health benefits. Our interview
with Florence Williams, journalist, author
and researcher provides insights on the
interrelationship between nature and our
brains and how to design better buildings
and urban environments.
Opportunities to bring biophilic
elements into our built environment are
also profiled in a green wall article by Hal
Thorne, CEO of GSky. It is probably no
surprise that we also learn that the hotels
in downtown Minneapolis advertise suites

with a view to the Target Center green roof
in our commemorative case study of iconic
projects. The market for biophilic planning
and development also reveals itself through
pioneer Steve Nygren, a restauranteur turned
developer. In his interview he shares how
biophilic design has shaped and sold the
sustainable community development called
Serenbe, only 30 minutes from Atlanta.
The mounting stress levels of our times
are fueled by apocalyptic scientific warnings
of runaway climate change in ten years (see
Dr. Brad Bass's article P. 30) and coupled
with incomprehensible denial and political
foot dragging. This bizarre and frightening
state of affairs is mixed with a steady stream
of news of raging forest fires, floods, heat
waves, droughts, rising tides, the melting of
Arctic and Antarctic ice, and massive species
extinction. To cope, we need more than ever
to design communities and buildings that
are biophilic in nature. In so doing, we'll not
only contribute to mitigating climate change,
but we can become more resilient in the
face of future shocks. We'll also be a whole
lot healthier and happier along the way and
perhaps, just perhaps, a little awestruck too.
Sincerely yours,

Steven W. Peck,
GRP, Honorary ASLA
Founder and President

LIVING ARCHITECTURE MONITOR / SPRING 2019 / 1


http://www.LIVINGARCHITECTUREMONITOR.COM

Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019

Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - IP
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - Cover
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - Cover 2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - Table of Contents
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - A1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - 1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - 2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - 3
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - 4
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Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - M1
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - A2
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - A3
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - A4
Green Roofs - Living Architecture Monitor - Summer 2019 - A5
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2017winter
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2017Spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2016winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2016fall
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2016spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2015Winter
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https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2014winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2014fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2014summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2014spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2013winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2013fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2013summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2013spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2012fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2012summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2012spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2012winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2011fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2011summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2011spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2011winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2010fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2010summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2010spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2010winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2009fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2009summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2009spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2009winter
https://www.nxtbook.com/dawson/greenroofs/lam_2008fall
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