Category Archives: Article of Interest

Mobilane Green Screens used to create Highways England’s first ‘green bridge’

Highways England has installed its first ‘green bridge’ as part of the new £192 million A556 Knutsford to Bowdon dual carriageway, and has used Mobilane Green Screens as part of the innovative new feature.

The project to improve links between M6 and M56 includes seven new bridges plus a pedestrian underpass along the length of the 4.5 mile new road. Other work includes concrete retaining walls and repairs to two existing bridges.

The new ‘green bridge’ has been built to provide a safe crossing for wildlife and is part of a focus on the environment which Highways England is committed to in order to minimise the impact of roads on native species and the natural environment. Other measures include reducing noise, and protecting watercourses from pollutant spillage.

Mobilane Green Screen
Mobilane Green Screen

“The ‘green bridge’ features the use of Mobilane Green Screens,” explains Paul Garlick of Mobilane. “Green Screens are wire security fences upon which ivy has been cultivated. In total 88 1.8m high screens were purchased and installed by Costain. These screens feature Hedera Helix Woerner and powder coated steel posts.

“Green Screens have a wide range of uses for domestic, public sector and commercial applications including housing developments, schools, hospitals and car parks. Many local authorities use them on roadside verges. However, the use of our Screens on this ‘green bridge’ is a first. It really helps to underline the sustainability credentials of the Screens and we are very proud they have been used on this landmark construction.”

The new dual carriageway will make travelling between the M6, south Manchester and Manchester Airport quicker and more predictable. It will bring significant benefits to strategic traffic by reducing journey times.

May 2017

MOBILANE GREEN SCREEN SUSTAINABLE SECURITY FENCING ON DISPLAY AT FUTURESCAPE

The ultimate in secure sustainable security fencing will be on display at the Futurescape event, which takes place Tuesday 15th November at Sandown Park Racecourse, Surrey. Visitors to the Mobilane stand (70) will be able to see the multiple uses and applications for the company’s market leading Green Screen, which has become the sustainable fencing solution of choice for domestic, public sector and commercial applications including housing development, schools, hospitals, car parks and roadside verges.

Mobilane’s Green Screen is a pre-cultivated screen which features a galvanised high carbon steel weldmesh that supports 65 ivy plants, each of which is trained through the mesh as it grows. The steel weldmesh itself delivers a very effective security barrier, while the ivy flourishes and requires minimal maintenance – unlike a traditional hedge which requires periodic heavy pruning and is prone to collapse in high winds or snow. As well as different species of ivy, the screens can also feature Hornbeam, Beech, Ligustrum and Pyracantha. The screens come in a variety of lengths, and are 3m in height.

Crucially, Green Screens have an extremely narrow physical footprint and an expected life of 45 years, giving them a very high biodiversity footprint. They also have additional benefits over walls and wooden fences as they deter graffiti and vandalism.

“Mobilane Green Screens are our most successful proven system,” explains Paul Garlick, National Sales Manager for Mobilane. “The system has proven itself in a wide variety of scenarios and uses, from high-end domestic developments that require the highest levels of security, to large estates where space is at a premium, through to commercial applications around offices, hospitals and car parks, and even as a safety measure along busy roads.

“The benefits of plants in the urban environment is well understood and the need for more plants is a pressing one to help combat pollution. However, the challenge has always been how to introduce plants quickly and effectively. Mobilane Green Screens deliver on all fronts, as their widespread use illustrates. Whether your pressing requirement is aesthetic, sustainability, security, or the need for a rapidly installed instant solution, Green Screens deliver all benefits in one.”

For further information on Mobilane systems visit www.mobilane.co.uk. Follow us on Twitter @Mobilanekant-klaarhaag-lr

 

Mobilane LivePanel on display to help attract new franchisees at Inleaf

Inleaf, the Manchester-based commercial plants specialist has added a Mobilane LivePanel system and three LivePictures to its showroom to allow the company to better demonstrate their benefits to clients, as well as to other installers interested in becoming Inleaf franchisees.

Founded by husband and wife Daniel and Charlotte Atherton – a qualified Landscape Architect – Inleaf are keen supporters of Mobilane systems and have recently completed the design and installation of a 25m square installation as part of an office refurbishment for a pharmaceutical company in Chester.

“Having the LivePanel and LivePicture at the showroom is useful for demonstrating the systems to clients,” explains Daniel Atherton. “However, Inleaf is a franchise operation and all our franchise events are held at our showrooms, so the LivePanels and LivePictures are useful for educating potential franchisees about the unique products they can offer.”

Daniel and Charlotte set the company up with the aim of becoming a franchise, and created their showroom to allow them to train people. With a long-term goal to have franchisees nationwide, Inleaf will recruit, train and support franchisees, as well as taking the lead on new products such as Mobilane systems.

“We launched in February,” continues Daniel, “And we are getting our first franchisees lined up. The industry is very competitive, but with our franchise opportunity we believe franchisees can become successful. There has been a sea change in the last few years and there is a growing market for living walls. The sense we are getting is there is a lot more awareness, which is largely client-led. For example, the Chester installation was part of the client and architect’s brief. We are seeing this more and more.

“In terms of general plants in the commercial space, we are finding a wide range of companies coming to us for solutions, with clients understanding the wide range of benefits of plants in the work place. However, there is still a job to be done in educating smaller businesses, which is where our demonstration systems at the showroom come in.”

inleaf-demo-wall

For further information on Mobilane systems visit www.mobilane.co.uk. Follow us on Twitter @Mobilane

For further information on Inleaf and its franchise opportunity visit www.Inleaf.co.uk

MOBILANE AND UNIVERSITY OF GREENWICH LAUNCH INTERIOR LIVING WALL RESEARCH PROJECT

Mobilane, the leading supplier of living systems for exterior and interior use, has partnered with the University of Greenwich Green Roofs & Living Walls Centre on a year-long research project that explores and measures the health and wellbeing effects of interior living walls and other similar systems in a classroom environment.

Mobilane LiveDivider and LivePicture systems, which use the same cassette technology as the LivePanel living wall system, have been installed in Windrush Primary School and Royal Greenwich University Technical College, both of which are within the Royal Borough of Greenwich. The big idea behind the installations is to monitor and assess the effects of the living walls on students.

As Dr Benz Kotzen and Shelley Mosco of the Department of Architecture and Landscape, University of Greenwich explain “Children and students are especially sensitive to indoor air quality problems that may be alleviated through the use of plants, and because their performance and behaviour during study is so closely monitored and recorded, school and college classrooms provide an ideal testing ground.

“The research will build on previous studies which have shown that plants provide an effective method of regulating environmental conditions within buildings by improving air quality through the removal of impurities or through the increase of humidity, temperature control and abatement of noise. Indoor plants have also been shown to result in an increase in performance and creativity of employees and students, and to reduce levels of aggression and stress. A scientific investigation of this type of installation has the potential added value of incorporating the research process and results into the educational curriculum in science, biology, chemistry and maths. The students and staff will be tasked with maintaining the systems and daily collection of temperature, humidity and other data.”

The Mobilane LiveDividers and LivePictures have been installed in a library and one classroom, and the grades and behaviour of the students using those classrooms will be monitored over the course of the summer term in order to see whether there is a significant improvement compared with the period before the wall was installed. It is intended that the walls will be reintroduced in the new school year to collect more data.

The living systems have been installed by Darren Stobbart of The Plantman, who described the initial response by staff as extremely positive. “The staff at both the school and college were clearly delighted with the systems and keen to help with the research programme. The children at Windrush Primary School will certainly benefit from a better understanding of plants and their role in air purification, so there are additional benefits beyond the research outcomes.”

Click here to visit the Mobilane website http://mobilane.co.uk/

Click here to visit The Plantman’s website http://www.theplantman.co/

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GP Plantscape introduces Mobilane to its design-led offer

GP Plantscape, the family-owned commercial landscaping experts headquartered in Lanark, has added Mobilane systems to its core offer as a response to a trend towards office design that has plants as a key element.

GP Plantscape has offices across the UK including Manchester, Leicester, Newcastle, and up as far as Fyfe, giving the company a nationwide reach. The company handles contracts for blue chip clients such as banks, investment companies, and facilities management companies for whom GP Plantscape supplies and maintains interior and external landscaping across client sites nationwide.

“We are interior and exterior landscaping specialists with a focus on the commercial sector, interior plants for offices and exterior landscaping,” explains Alison Gilchrist of GP Plantscape. “We complement our core design and installation with maintenance.

“There is a clear trend within the office plant market that is moving towards more integrated office design, as well as more design within exterior landscaping. We find that Mobilane products lend themselves to this more aesthetic approach with the use of plants moving on from the days of simply a plant in a container.

“We see this as a growing area for the business as well as for our clients that are architects and designers and who are specifying plants as part of a wider design concept, instead of something introduced as an afterthought.

“We intend to increasingly build the use of Mobilane products like LivePicture and LivePanel into customer quotes and maintain the systems for them. We have used Mobilane products for both interior and exterior applications previously, and know how well suited they are to the commercial sector and design-led applications.”

Talking about the new relationship, Paul Garlick, National Business Manager at Mobilane UK said “GP Plantscape is the type of partner that is a natural fit for Mobilane. With an extensive nationwide network, and working to the highest standards, GP Plantscape understands exactly where the market is going and how it is evolving to a place where our products have a natural fit. We are sure our systems will help GP Plantscape to better attack the commercial market.”

For further information on Mobilane systems visit www.mobilane.co.uk. Follow us on Twitter @Mobilane

To visit the GP Plantse website, click this link http://www.gpplantscape.com/

gp-plantscape

InLeaf installs LivePanel and LivePictures at showroom

InLeaf, the Manchester-based commercial plants specialist has added a LivePanel system and three LivePictures to its showroom to allow the company to better demonstrate their benefits to clients as well as to other installers interested in becoming InLeaf franchisees.

Founded by husband and wife Daniel and Charlotte Atherton, a qualified Landscape Architect, Inleaf are keen supporters of Mobilane systems. The company will shortly embark on a major Mobilane installation with a pharmaceutical company in Chester that already has a living wall at its office in Uxbridge. The renovation of the client’s office in Chester includes the installation of a 22m square LivePanel living wall for which InLeaf is doing all the design, installation and maintenance.

“Having the LivePanel and LivePicture at the showroom is useful for demonstrating the systems to clients,” explains Daniel Atherton. “However, InLeaf is a franchise operation and we are looking for franchisees. All our franchise events are held at our showrooms, so the LivePanels and LivePictures are useful for educating potential franchisees about the products they can offer that are different.”

Daniel and Charlotte set the company up with the aim of becoming a franchise, which is why they have a showroom to allow themto train people. With a long-term goal to have franchisees nationwide, InLeaf will recruit, train and support franchisees, as well as taking the lead on new products such as Mobilane systems.

“We only launched in February,” continues Daniel, “So it’s still early days. However, they are getting our first franchisees lined up. The industry is very competitive, which is why we think the franchise idea can help other companies compete. There is a growing market for living walls and there has been a sea change in the last few years. The sense we are getting is there’s a lot more awareness, which is largely client-led. For example, the Chester installation was part of the client brief. We are seeing this more and more.

“In terms of general plants in the commercial space, we are finding a wide range of companies coming to us for solutions, with clients understanding the wide range of benefits of plants in the work place. However, there is still a job to be done in educating smaller businesses, which is where our demonstration systems at the showroom come in.”

inleaf

Visit https://inleaf.co.uk/ to know more

Safe, secure and sustainable

 

Monday, 8th August 2016

Paul Garlick of Mobilane looks at the challenge of installing boundaries that satisfy safety and security requirements, as well as being eco-friendly.

In an ideal world perhaps we wouldn’t need walls and fences. People (and animals) would simply appreciate where the boundaries of a property are. But of course this isn’t an ideal world and there are many other reasons we need ways of marking the boundaries of a property, such as walls, fences and hedges.

As well as marking the perimeter of a property or estate, a boundary affords privacy and security. The degree to which it will provide these things depends on the type of boundary used and its size. The humble hedge for example provides privacy but lacks security and is easy for animals to negotiate. On the other hand the harsh wire fence delivers security, but not privacy. The wall or wooden fence can provide both, but at the expense of aesthetics and sustainability.

Sustainability is an increasingly important consideration with all aspects of building and applies equally when it comes to perimeters. Historically the only type of perimeter that can claim any sustainability credentials is the hedge. However, as well as falling short with regards to security, hedges mean an ongoing investment in maintenance to keep them neat and a healthy hedge will have a considerable physical footprint, often several feet wide for a substantial one.

Aesthetics is equally important and again the hedge easily wins over a brick wall or wooden or wire fence. A nicely maintained hedge will make a domestic property far more attractive.

There are now boundary solutions that tick all the boxes with regards to aesthetics, sustainability, security, privacy and which are easy to install and low maintenance, with a low physical footprint.

One such solution is the Mobilane Green Screen, which is a very simple concept. Essentially it is a living fence that consists of a galvanised steel grid on which climbing or hedging plants, usually ivy, have been cultivated. The metal grid is folded at the bottom to facilitate a biodegradable trough filled with potting soil. The plants are grown in this soil at a nursery and hand trailed upwards along the metal grid in order to get full thick foliage coverage.

Ivy is a particularly robust plant and presents few challenges regarding maintenance. While screens such as this are usually delivered and installed with plants already growing up them, ivy continues to grow and becomes verdant to deliver what looks like a well-managed ivy hedge, but with the additional security of the wire mesh.

Installation of screens is simple and requires the digging of a trench 400 mm wide by 400 mm deep. The screen is placed into the trench and soil is used to cover the biodegradable pot. They are additionally supported by wooden posts or powder coated metal posts, which also serve to join adjacent screens.

The screens have proved a popular solution on a range of domestic housing developments; from housing association and local authority developments, through to high end luxury developments.

When award winning developers Croudace Portland Homes embarked on a substantial and highly impressive new build project in a prime residential area of Surrey, they turned to Benchmark Landscape of Chelmsford to plan and manage the quality landscaping required to add value to the new development.

The new development would see two new five and six bedroom homes with a value of over £2.5m each, built on a plot of land that previously featured a single house. There was a necessity for a boundary between the new properties, and security was a requirement in the choice of boundary. A hedge would aesthetically suit the development and was preferable to a fence or wall, but would not deliver the required security. Benchmark Landscape specified Green Screens as the solution.

In total, 72 screens were used; 40 to create the required divisional boundary, and another 32 which were used on the front of one of the properties to screen an unsightly wall from an adjacent house. Benchmark Landscape had used screens like this previously and knew they would deliver both the required aesthetic as well as the highest levels of security.

In Ashton-Under-Lyne, a derelict site on a main access route was identified by West Pennine Housing Association for a new-build housing development for local families as part of a larger four part regeneration project. The Stockport Road site had already been awarded with a Green Apple Environmental Award as well as being shortlisted for the Building in Excellence Award.

Denovo Designs of Liverpool was the architect on the Stockport Road project and installed 30 screens at the development. Frank Olchowski, director and lead architect for the project explains why the screens were incorporated into the design:

“We specified the screens because of the planning requirement to provide an attractive, rear boundary treatment. The residents of the houses which overlook the site would not want to look onto a brick wall or timber fencing, especially if that type of boundary were to attract graffiti.”

He continues:

“Screens such as these ecologically enhance a site and provide a more attractive solution than walls or fences. We also had to comply with the Secured by Design requirement for a minimum height and secure boundary treatment.”

Social housing providers increasingly like to see green technologies used on their developments as they are invaluable in helping councils to ‘green up’ the environment and provide a more stimulating and pleasant environment. Solutions used on projects such as these also provide a deterrent to graffiti and other antisocial behaviour, and offer reduced maintenance costs when compared to other boundary markers such as timber fencing.

Source: Safe, secure and sustainable

 

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