Portland, Oregon is one of the greenest cities in the world, so we weren't at all surprised to find its international airport adorned with a vibrant vertical garden. Trading in the drab, grey look you might find at other airports, PDX boasts a flourishing wall of hanging plants that naturally shade the inside of its multi-level parking lot while simultaneously sprucing up the exterior. The green wall has only been around for a few years, so it's still a bit sparse, but we can't wait to see what it will look like after it grows in completely.
The lush vertical garden may be one of the first things visitors to Portland International Airport see, but the facility isn’t just green on the exterior. The terminal’s roadway is covered by a solar panel-clad glass canopy that currently produces about 12,000 kilowatt-hours of energy per year despite the city’s rainy reputation. PDX is also a leader in airport recycling with a successful food waste diversion program that diverts several tons of food waste, napkins and food-soiled paper from landfills each month. The airport also offers travelers and employees buses, a bicycle path and TriMet’s MAX light rail as fuel-saving transportation options.
In addition to its dedication to being environmentally-conscious, Portland International Airport is just one of the nicer airports to travel through in general and we’re not the only ones who think so. Conde Nast Traveler magazine named PDX the top domestic airport for three out of the last four years siting its free wireless Internet, plentiful selection of shops selling local goods, convenient TriMet light rail access to downtown Portland and its sustainable initiatives.
Photos © Yuka Yoneda