‘Living Wall’ – The Key to Creating Sustainably Smart Cities

‘Living Wall’ is Key To Creating Sustainable Smarter Cities

Image: Laura McKenzie/Texas A&M Division of Marketing & Communications

Nicely set up between the three buildings at Texas A&M University’s Langford Architecture Center, this “living wall” is grabbing international attention since its installation in 2018. A previously-simple brick wall is now decked up with a stunning 10-feet-tall living wall that includes soil, an irrigation system, and gorgeous plants. What makes this plant-loaded wall stand apart is its intriguing design, and the fact that it consists of recycled materials.

Created by Texas A&M University‘s associate professors Ahmed K. Ali and Bruce Dvorak, this plant wall has around 300 diamond-shaped planters. All these planters are made using folded scrap sheet metal that makers sourced from the automotive industry, as well as disposable matrix trays. The plastic trays also helped in transporting components to manufacture printed circuit boards. Recently, this living wall has been replanted after extremely freezing conditions killed many plants during the past winter.

‘Living Wall’ is Key To Creating Sustainable Smarter Cities

Image: Laura McKenzie/Texas A&M Division of Marketing & Communications

Each recycled planter contains sufficient soil to conveniently accommodate plants’ root systems. Since the planters are fixed to protrude out of the wall, the growing plants are more straight upward naturally. Besides that, the living wall has been integrated with a concealed drip irrigation system to meet the water needs of each plant.

Since this wall is situated in a dry Texas environment, the plants added to the planters are resistant to droughts. Such plant-filled walls not only look stunning but also help in oxygen production and keep buildings cool without the need for air conditioners. If property owners start opting for such living walls in their building architecture, they can easily create efficient and sustainable urban spaces in the future.

This type of urban garden is essentially a key factor in creating eco-friendly and green urban settlements in times of climate change. With temperatures rising exponentially amid global warming, these gardens and living walls can help maintain the ecological equilibrium.

‘Living Wall’ is Key To Creating Sustainable Smarter Cities

Image: Laura McKenzie/Texas A&M Division of Marketing & Communications

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