Gallery: Solar-Powered Garden Canopy Proposed For New York’s BQE

Connections calls for the addition of five new prefab pedestrian and bike-friendly bridges across the trench.

Starr Whitehouse presented three final concepts in a public meeting to 35 neighborhood residents as well as representatives of city agencies and state and local elected officials. The three concepts propose various degrees of linkages across the trench, the planting of trees, noise reduction schemes, and additional park space. Each concept is progressively more involved (and more expensive), but provides more open space, noise reduction and pollution mitigation.

The first concept, called Maximum Green, proposes to reconfigure the existing bridges to provide planter space and stormwater retention in swales for irrigation use. The trench would be surrounded with a plexiglass or artistic wall to cut down on noise from the highway. The second concept, called Connections, proposes the same as the first concept, but adds a series of 5 new prefabricated bicycle and pedestrian bridges at cross-streets that were severed by the BQE.

Finally, the third and most comprehensive design, called Green Canopy, includes all the traffic calming, planting and pedestrian bridges of the first two and adds a giant plant-covered canopy over the entire trench to cut down on noise and reduce pollution. The steel angle-and-beam structure canopy was designed with the help of Kiss+Cathcart Architects. Additionally, solar panels would cover the canopy to generate renewable energy and space would be created for new shops or restaurants at bridge crossings.

Costs for the proposals vary from $10.7 million up to $82.7 million depending on the concept chosen and additional features. Funding for the project has not been allocated nor have any decisions been made.

+ Starr Whitehouse

Via A/N Blog

Images © Starr Whitehouse


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1 Comment

  1. solargardens December 28, 2010 at 8:40 am

    This is a perfect example of how we can integrate distributed renewables into the built environment… In Colorado we now have the Community Solar Gardens Act, which allows for shared ownership of solar energy. This would work well with the sort of design shown here.

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