Tag Archives: environment

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

 

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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 BSI Bomenservice complete Europe’s Largest green wall in Belgium

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The front wall of a recently opened European distribution centre in the Belgian community of Laakdal, is displaying the largest green wall of Europe for the most renowned sports shoes manufacturer. The green wall surface consists of about 100,000 plants spanning over 2,000 m2. The green wall system used for this project, LivePanel, consists of a carefully selected range of plants, including Alchemilla, Bergenia, Campanula, Geranium and Nepeta. The innovative new building of the leading sports brand is fully powered by renewable energy from solar panels, wind turbines and a geothermal system.

Saving water The BSI Bomenservice, based in Baarn, was in charge of installation and maintenance. The giant planted wall is equipped with an integrated irrigation system, permanently distributing enough moisture and plant food Mobilane and BSI Bomenservice stated that “The client required a sustainable green wall with minimum water consumption. After an extensive selection process of available systems, we chose Mobilane’s LivePanel in consultation with the architects”.

The minimal water consumption, the relatively low weight and the proven performance of the green wall system in combination with the excellent quality/price ratio were the key factors.

Innovative Mobilane is a supplier of innovative green systems, and the plant wall consists of Mobilane’s modular LivePanel system. The green wall is not soil-bound and contains a total of 11,000 exchangeable plant cassettes. Each row of cassettes is placed in an aluminium duct profile which also serves as a water reservoir. The plants in the cassettes are automatically watered by an innovative capillary irrigation system operated by wall sensors. The innovative system requires little maintenance, is leak-free and not susceptible to breakdowns. Once disassembled, the living wall can be fully recycled.

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Read the article on the Mobilane Website: http://mobilane.co.uk/news/mobilane-and-bsi-bomenservice-complete-europes-largest-green-wall-in-belgium

Every urban green gain counts

Early this summer, Brent Council unveiled its £90m new headquarters. Boasting a BREEAM rating of ‘outstanding’, the civic centre has a plethora of green features ranging from a clever natural ventilation system to wildlife friendly measures like bat boxes. It also features no less than 200 of our green screens as part of its landscaping scheme.

It’s an ambitious building. Brent has demonstrated what can be achieved when there are substantial upfront resources available. But valuable energy and sustainability gains can be made with far more modest means and, deployed in volume, can have a major beneficial impact on our the environment, our finances and our quality of life.

Across the board, public bodies are increasingly thinking more creatively about ways to create marginal green gains alongside grander greening schemes like, for example, congestion charging. Consider Bristol City Council which is set to save £500,000 per year on its energy bills by simply replacing high-pressure sodium lamps with ceramic metal halide lamps.

Urban greening is one instant and cost-effective method of boosting the sustainability credentials of both existing buildings and new build. For example, housing association Eastland Homes recently commissioned a 44m high living wall as part of the refurbishment of an apartment block in Manchester. It’s the highest living wall we’ve yet created.

Other public bodies such as Enfield Borough Council are using ‘living’ hoardings to help offset the carbon footprint of new developments – and enhance the locality. Enfield has installed a total of 70 sq m of ivy screens around a major regeneration site in Ponders End.

But the full potential of green screens as a tool to benefit the environment is yet to be tapped. Wherever there is a bare wall, there is an opportunity to reduce pollution, boost biodiversity levels and enhance the appearance of a locality.

If we are to truly tackle the big issues of climate change, excessive energy consumption, pollution and carbon emissions then no stone can be left unturned. We do need the grand gestures like Brent’s new civic centre – they act as a beacon of best practice. But we also need the relatively smaller scale measures like the judicious use of greenery and low energy lighting to ensure that every opportunity to create even a marginal gain for the environment is seized.

Mobilane living wall at the Library of Birmingham
Mobilane living wall at the Library of Birmingham

Green facelift for Manchester apartment block

A block of flats owned by Eastlands Homes housing association in east Manchester has been given a green facelift with a Mobilane living wall that runs up the full height of the nine-storey building. The installation is one of our tallest installations yet.
The ivy WallPlanters will help to insulate the flats at Worsley Court in Rusholme as well as enhancing the look of the block, which was built in the 60s and is in the process of being refurbished by Eastlands Homes.

Importantly, the ‘green wall’ will also help to reduce pollution levels near the flats; Worsley Court is located on Wilmslow Road, a busy bus corridor with high pollutant levels. In total, nine ivy WallPlanters have been installed by Hedera Screens to cover 100 sq m of the building. The plants will remove the same number of pollutant particulates from the air as four to five average-sized trees, but take up a fraction of the space.

Despite being 44 meters tall, the WallPlanters will be easy to maintain because of a special root zone in the planters that has been designed to give the plants an ideal environment in which to grow. A sophisticated irrigation system supplies water and nutrients as required.

It was installed as part of a project to revamp the apartment block, whichforms part of a project of three multi-storey blocks owned by Eastlands Homes. One of the key priorities in refurbishing this building was to improve the insulation of the flats. The ivy will help to reduce heat loss from the building in winter, while in the summer months it will help to shield the building from the sun’s rays and keep the interior cool.

The finishing touches are added to Mobilane WallPlanters at Worsley Court, Rusholme.

Greenbuild Expo 2013 – The Air We Breathe

It was, roughly speaking, in the mid 1990s that someone, most likely in the US, thought to put together the words ‘green’ and ‘infrastructure’. Roll on to 2013 and the concept of green infrastructure is still a relatively unfamiliar concept outside the green sector, but it is one that is increasingly set to take centre stage. Though exact definitions of green infrastructure may vary, the consensus is that its key purpose is to produce cleaner air. And that’s a matter that concerns every one of us.

I had the opportunity to speak on the issues, practical challenges and solutions involved with greening our urban environments at this year’s Greenbuild Expo. The challenge is stark. World-wide, more and more people are living in urban environments with limited access to green space, while – at the same time – in many parts of the world pollution levels are increasing. In Europealone, a 10% increase in urbanisation is expected between 2000 and 2015, while 45 million people already have limited access to green space. There is a huge body of research that links poor air quality to higher asthma rates, lung problems and even stunted lung growth in children.

There’s also a growing body of research evidence to link greenery in the form of trees, plants and other vegetation to a happier, healthier urban living experience. Among their many virtues, plants breathe out oxygen and remove pollutant matter or dust – called PM10s – from the air. In addition, greenery also encourages bio-diversity in cities, offers shade, promotes a feeling of wellbeing and can even help reduce crime levels.

At Mobilane, we are working in partnership with Staffordshire University to explore more fully the range of benefits offered by green infrastructure. It was my pleasure to present at Greenbuild alongside John Dover, Professor of Ecology at the university, who talked about the meaning of green infrastructure and the potential for integrating greenery into urban areas.

A creative approach will certainly be needed to ramp up the green volume in our cities. Trees take up huge amounts of space and require relatively high levels of maintenance. Our living screens and Living Walls offer a vertical way to green up space that produces immediate results both in terms of aesthetics and PM10 reduction. We also have a range of temporary green screens such as Living Hoardings that can boost greenery levels around construction sites – and help offset building projects’ carbon footprint.

If green, living structures are to become an integrated feature of urban landscapes, our notion of how greenery is used will need to become far broader. But the results will be well worth it – cleaner air for everyone.

For more information about Mobilane’s green screens, Living Walls and other products, please visit our website www.mobilane.co.uk

 
 
Professor John Dover of Staffordshire University and  me at the Greenbuild Expo in Manchester. 

Our Green Screens help Marlow become a safer place for drivers

We have helped to increase road safety and support the environment in Marlow as we have installed our Green Screens. Our six-foot high Green Screens can now be seen on the central reserve area of the A4155 Marlow Road, on the east side of the roundabout at the junction with the A404.  They have already proved effective in the aims of reducing both driver distraction and roundabout approach speed.

This project comes about after the local authority in Marlow following a review of the analysis of reported injury collisions in the last three years took the initiative to act to improve safety at the junction.  It was found that these were mainly as a result of excessive approach speeds towards the roundabout.  The installation of our Green Screens have restricted the visibility on the approach to the roundabout which has instantly provided the desired effect and created an aesthetically pleasing barrier which is sustainable and environmentally sound.

The addition of the screens serves to restrict drivers’ views of traffic to their right as they approach the roundabout, encouraging them to reduce their speed. Initial results from speed flow data show an average total reduction of around 4mph in approach speeds and also a significant reduction in the number of vehicles approaching the roundabout at higher speeds.

Green screens are a simple yet remarkably effective concept, featuring a biodegradable pot which holds a wire mesh ‘fence’ onto which vegetation, usually ivy, is grown. Our screens are cultivated offsite and are delivered ready to install. As soon as they are installed they provide an attractive barrier solution with aesthetic, environmental and maintenance benefits over traditional walls and fences.  They also provide an acoustic barrier which reduces the traffic noise in the surrounding environment.  Unlike hedges the vegetation in the screens does not grow significantly above the height of the wire fence, so they do not require regular pruning, and they are much narrower yet more dimensionally stable than hedges.

Green Screens have a wide range of uses, including encouraging biodiversity, improving air quality and tackling graffiti.  Local authorities are increasingly adopting innovative uses of the screens as they continue to see their versatility, sustainability and low maintenance costs. We are pleased to see Marlow leading the way and the results from this installation.