Introducing 2020, Pantone’s Classic Blue offers us a quiet confidence for a new era. This enduring hue highlights our desire for a dependable and stable foundation. In the garden blooming plants such as hyacinths, muscari, iris, delphinium, pericallis, and hydrangea are poised and remind us that this blue hue is elegant in its simplicity. The versatility of the color takes on distinct appearances through different materials, finishes, and textures. From accent textiles to glazed ceramic pottery, PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue makes a dramatic statement, transforming a space through unique color combinations and tonal statements.
Effective plant design in shopping malls and retail environments have several strong functions to offer. Plantscaping can emphasize the character of the mall and help create an atmosphere that shoppers enjoy. The presence of greenery makes shopping centers more appealing to customers creating an enjoyable shopping experience. Plants are also known to reduce noise levels which can be important for busy retail destinations. From directing foot traffic to providing shoppers with an inviting place to relax between shopping visits, plants are an integral part of the selling environment.
“Retailers have long understood the importance of store environment in enhancing the shopping experience. The outdoor landscape can be a seamless extension of shop interiors, providing indoor/outdoor continuity for a positive shopping experience. Urban forestry can play an important role in business districts. Interior plants and landscape may create store interiors more favorable for retail activity.” (Ref: “Retail and Urban Nature: Creating a Consumer Habitat”, K.L.Wolf, at the People/Plant Symposium, Amsterdam, 2002).
A best-in-class commercial building in the heart of New York’s Flatiron District, has attracted a new tenant. The brand new entrance and renovated lobby drew a well-known firm who fit out their new space to the nines, show-casing a clean and ultra-modern feel. The interior plants and containers play a key role in the design, delivering a unique, creative and purposeful feel to the workspace. Bright red containers with simple, sculptural plants create a bold, eye-catching silhouette. Prism containers, clustered together and planted with a mixed foliage palette create a geometric and organic display. The ‘less is more’ approach, with fewer planters deliberately placed, meld seamlessly into the space, visual elements as crucial as lighting, furniture and artwork.
As Brooklyn continues to reach upward, its newest denizens demand an aesthetic which marries the past with the present. For the latest buildings, rooftop spaces are not an after-thought but are carefully engineered and planned early in the design phase, often long before there is a semblance of a space to survey.
The primary challenge with common spaces for residential buildings is to provide some level of individual privacy while developing an overall spatial design which will also foster social interaction between users. In order to achieve this balance, smaller conversational spaces which are defined through the rigid face of the wood-clad planters and accented by hearty plantings and provide a diverse mix of seating types from long benches attached to the face of the planters to moveable chairs and tables allowing for maximum flexibility. The smaller conversational spaces take advantage of the views from the outside edges of the roof while the larger common spaces are defined by plant-softened wood fences.
The materials of the space borrow from the buildings context, reclaiming many of the materials which permeated Brooklyn’s industrial heritage. Concrete, steel, aluminum and various fabrics are some of the elements which help to unite the past with the present. Transferring the feel of the sidewalk planting bed to the rooftop is achieved through the raw steel-edged green-roof garden areas which help define the spaces.
Often times, the smallest of spaces prove to be the largest design challenge. Clients desire functional spaces which exude the lush, organic beauty they glimpse at spaces which tend to garner more of the press attention, which usually suggests they are greater in scale. In order for form and function to be joined in spiritual union, we can look to the context of the space in order to garner inspiration.
Introducing curved containers into the garden not only minimizes the angular impact of the space and its surrounding vertical neighbors, but borrows from the ebb and flow of the river passing by to the west. The containers vary in height so as to provide an accented and unimpeded view from the inside to the outside. The lush plantings reflect some of the leafy residents of nearby Riverside Park as well as reinforcing the movement of the Hudson as the grasses sway in the breezes high above the street.