Published on August 7th, 2013 | by Important Media Cross-Post


Buses With Gardens On Top

August 7th, 2013 by  

Originally published on Gas2.
By Chris DeMorro

bus-garden-11Humankind has always been attracted towards both cities and nature, and finding a balance between 21st century urbanism and the environment is an ongoing challenge. With green space at a premium in many places, a Spanish landscape artist conceived of a lightweight rooftop garden placed atop public transit buses.

Marc Grañén is the artist who came up with the Phyto Kinetic mobile gardens, and he did it in a clever way that drastically reduces the weight of the greenspace. Using a lightweight hydroponic foam, rather than regular soil, the rooftop garden is a far more attractive concept as it doesn’t drastically affect the buses performance. A water-proof sealant keeps the garden from soaking riders, and baffles are used to ensure that the liquid moves around to prevent stagnation.

Water from air conditioning units can hydrate the garden, and Grañén estimates that larger cities could add over 100,000 square-meters of green space to their city using this method. Sure, you can’t chill in a bus-top garden per se, but the fringe benefits of having oxygen-producing plants travelling around, sucking up at least some of the massive amounts of pollution many urban areas wallow in.

While still a concept for now, with two buses converted to gardens-on-the-go. Perhaps one day we can add a little extra nature to our cities in the form of ever-moving gardens, bringing nature to you at every transit stop.

For more pics, skip over to Gas2.

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  • Wayne Williamson

    agree with both the posters….solar cells make much more sense….

  • Altair IV

    Interesting idea.

    But frankly I think it would be more practical in most places just to layer on a sheet of thin-film solar cells. These could then power the a/c and other internals of the vehicle at the least, and perhaps even help to charge the main batteries if the thing were electrical.

    In fact, I had the same idea a while back when riding the train. I’ve noticed that the cars generally have large expanses of open roof space, and run for long periods in the open summer sun. A few panels on the roofs could provide a decent energy boost without much in the way of cost or other downsides (that I can think of).

    • Bob_Wallace

      Silly idea.

      Wind-shredded lettuce. Climbing a ladder to pick what isn’t blown to bits.

      India is experimenting with adding solar panels to the tops of their train cars to add power for AC.

      I like the idea of running trains on electricity and installing solar panels above the tracks. Vastly more area available for panels compared to only car tops. Harvest a lot more electricity and let the trains run in the shade.

      There’s a stretch of rail in Europe which has a “solar roof”.

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