Project Details

Covent Garden, London

To coincide with the 500th anniversary of Covent Garden we were commissioned to create a vertical park at the gateway to the area.  The living wall itself is formed of 8,000 plants from 21 varieties and it will provide a real wow factor to anyone coming out of Covent Garden Tube Station.

We undertook the full package for the external envelope of this refurbishment project including designing and installing both the complex structural support frame as well as retrofitting a rainwater harvesting system into the basement of the building to use to irrigate the living wall.

This project also has a number of special features that were designed and installed by Biotecture including some bespoke LED lit balcony planters and a dynamic lighting installation across the whole of the living wall. The Covent Garden gateway vertical park will look stunning during the day and after dark it will take on a life of its own and add to the vibrancy of this popular night-time destination.

 

The client's brief was

- To provide as much colour and variety as possible in the planting taking into account the façade orientation and local conditions
- Planting selection to provide biodiversity and air quality improvements
- Rain water harvesting to be utilised
- External planters to be mounted beneath the windows
- Uplighters included to add night time interest

The Living wall at Regal House covers two elevations, The Long Acre façade has a North Westerly aspect and the James Street Façade has a South Westerly aspect. Biotecture carried out shading studies to determine how the living wall would be over shadowed by the surrounding architecture.

The client chose an organic, curvilinear planting design that would add the appearance of dynamic movement to the building. Plants of similar form and/or colour were selected for the two aspects to provide uniformity of design. The microclimate is a fairly sheltered one although there may be wind turbulence likely near to the top of the wall. The plants that have been selected are hardy and mostly evergreen with some seasonal interest provided by flowering plants.

It was also important to the client that the planting selection provide biodiversity and air quality improvements. Plants were selected that would provide for native birds and invertebrates in particular, as well as flowering plants that would provide some nectar and possible nesting material. Plants have also been selected for their ability to assist with the capture of particle matter. Leaf size, shape and surface textures of waxy, hairy, rough and/or ridged are all considered.

  • Category: Exterior – Large Scale
  • Client: Covent Garden
  • Installed: 2017
  • Key features: High profile location / Illuminated external planters / Wrapping the corner of the building on Long Achre and James Street