Blog and Photos by Christina Catanese
A few months ago, home in my native Pittsburgh, I paid a visit with my family to a place I went to many times growing up – Phipps Conservatory. My childhood recollections of the place mainly revolve around the stunning plant displays, and the plethora of colors and types of flowers that seemed to grow out of every possible surface. I was enchanted by the re-creation of various ecosystems, like the tropical plant room that thrived even in the bleak Pittsburgh winter. But during this visit, I encountered a new aspect of the Conservatory that changed how I saw the place, and indeed, my hometown itself.
The Center for Sustainable Landscapes was opened last year as Phipps’ hub for education, research, and administration. Striving to be “one of the greenest buildings on earth,” the Center utilizes innovative technologies to generate all its own energy, as well as treat and reuse all water captured on site.
While a beautiful architectural construction, I was most impressed with the stormwater management measures the Center took, from the green roof, to rain gardens, to the pervious pavement used on the walkways.
Click “read more…” below to read the rest of this photo essay!