Cheshire Shakeshaft Ltd
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The Green Wall at Snow Hill in Birmingham is Europe’s largest ‘living wall’, standing 7 metres tall and 220 metres long, and garlanded with 604 square metres of plants. Merging nature, architecture and beautiful LED lighting, the living wall forms an eye-catching feature of Two Snowhill, one of the largest office developments outside of London, and runs parallel to the new tram line and Snow Hill Station.
Prior to installation, the plants were pre-grown in purpose-built panels in a nursery in Holland, and delivered to the site ready to be attached. As well as plants, the living wall incorporates decorative perforated aluminium panels, running the length of the wall, designed by Central Fabrications to capture artificial and natural daylight.
The primary design objective of the project was to bring out the unique perforated ripple texture of the panels. At night, programmable uplighters bring the wall to life, creating constantly changing patterns and giving the illusion of depth and movement.
As a striking piece of illuminated living architecture, the living wall combines quality build, with cost-effective environment friendliness and achieved winner’s status in the Exterior Lighting category at the 2014 Lighting Design Awards.
Carly Kingswell, from landscape architects, Hyland Edgar Driver, who designed the wall, said: “Living walls have been growing in popularity over a number of years, although one on the scale of Two Snowhill’s is rarely seen. The technology is relatively young, but this particular system is tried and tested, and once the plants achieve full coverage, the effect is fantastic.”