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Ancient and modern "Green cities"

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fantasus View Drop Down
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    Posted: 30 Sep 2011 at 22:45
"Green" architecture and engineering is ancient, but today, with all the crowding, some opportunities to have extra "green" areas for recrerative purposes, as well as others, seems rarely used. At least from ancient babylon, as well as from farmhouses many places vegetations at the top, for annimal fodder and other purposes are well known as well as aquacultures, especially from ancient Mexico. One may wonder why not modern cities in the same ways in some cases could be "covered with green" (vegetation- gardens,parks, even water). If connected with bridges, there could even be larger, continuous areas. At ground level green areas, could replace streets and parking lots (if put underground). Perhaps easiest for rather "horisontal" cities, but not impossible for "vertical" ones either.
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drgonzaga View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Oct 2011 at 00:36
Perhaps the above observation may be valid with respect to the urban cores of Europe [only replicated in the concrete jungles of places such as NYC and Chicago] but grass and trees often assume pesky proportions in some American cities. Yes, the "horizontal" pervades US urbanization for the most part, but in the vertical setting let us just say that until "grass" has the capacity to pay rent, "green" will remain solely a decorative element. Right now, the crisis in Houston stems from the fact that the recent drought has caused severe problems to its green canopy, a complication rarely encountered in an European setting.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Oct 2011 at 01:28
I can't imagine an ancient "Green" city. yes, perhaps they lacked air contamination and other polutions, but germs and bad smell was everywhere.

Now, those "ecological" cities you find in the Maya sites and elsewhere in the Americas is the aspect they have today! Not in the classical times, when deforestation was widespread.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Oct 2011 at 05:14
I admit I used paragraphs "", but had not least in mind green covered buildings and cities - litterally - covered some places with vegetation. If not cities, at least old buldings in the coutryside has been so many places in the world. It is of course still possible to have vegetation at the outside -  on the top of buildings  or on ground level, and since this planet ís still being more crowded many places - plus people demanding more space at least were they can afford it - I see it as an obvious  possible solution to ecxtend the areas of vegetation, perhaps even trees and habitats for animals. Many plants and animals, also "wild" ones, may be able to coexist with even substantial human populations I think, at the countryside, in suburbs, and to some degree even in more densely populated areas. Think the more densely populated parts of Asia.
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Ramesh V.Naivaruni View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ramesh V.Naivaruni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Oct 2011 at 23:25
I have come accross lots of Green Standards especially from California, they have something called Gold rating, silver rating etc.,for the building, incidentally if one is understand them in literal sense of terms most of standards are compromised formula governed Industries who are key stake holders in the governing bodies.
Let us take CRI(CARPET RUG INSTITUTE) this gives out specification for carpets manufacturers, this body is controlled by companies like Shaw Industries,Interface floor, Miliken, Mohawk and likes, similarly the you have different manufacturer created organisation within USA who puts such standards to the companies that they outsource services from in India and China. The crux of the matter is that first we pollute and try and talk green concepts.
I was thrilled by one initiative which is 'CRADLE TO CRADLE DESIGN PROTOCOL' Which simply means you have to manufacture products which is 100% recycleable and at the end of the product life cycle, the company which sells the product should take it back and recycle it at no extra cost to the customer. This is one way a excellent environmental initiative--companies who are following these are Shaw Industries Inc(A berkshire hatway group company), Rebok, Nike and the likes.
 
Finally many of the green products cited are not really green (leed ratings & certifications), which needs to be addressed to.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Oct 2011 at 23:33
You want to save the environment? Jail Mrs. Robinson and ban plastics! Long ago "recycling" was far more efficient from glass bottles through paper to scrap metals. The myth of green is asserted by a false polemic.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ramesh V.Naivaruni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Oct 2011 at 23:52

The invention of plastic is more of a curse as this accounts for a major portions of Land fill.  The 60-70% landfill takes place by baby diapers the second contributions is from Carpets.  We should be asking people to go back to wollen carpets instead synthetic and glass bottles instead of Plastic bottles. We should have Mud Pots in corporates offices instead of storing storing portable water(as we used to have in India in the 60s and 70s).  Great to think about how green was our surrounding once?

Personally speaking I still have a pond with fresh water  fishes and use very less of plastic wherever possible,I wear only cotton clothes and I in my small way try to use only green products. I will use from now of Glass bottles(Thanks to Doctor for advise---No sarcasm meant very serious) .
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Oct 2011 at 02:48
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

You want to save the environment? Jail Mrs. Robinson and ban plastics! Long ago "recycling" was far more efficient from glass bottles through paper to scrap metals. The myth of green is asserted by a false polemic.
Why should discussion about this subject necessarily be  "polemical", "false" or "true"?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Oct 2011 at 00:40
Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

You want to save the environment? Jail Mrs. Robinson and ban plastics! Long ago "recycling" was far more efficient from glass bottles through paper to scrap metals. The myth of green is asserted by a false polemic.
Why should discussion about this subject necessarily be  "polemical", "false" or "true"?
 
Because of its "disconnect" from economic reality and the notion that one could play at "farming" in the urban landscape while enjoying the substandard constructions that now pass for urban projects. Admit it, Fantasus, modern homo urbanus is fundamentally lazy and has become totally addicted to what is convenient and cheap while littering the landscape with the detritus of these addictions. As recently as just 50 years ago most cities consumed foodstuffs generally produced within a 100 mile radius of its center save for the exotic. "Urban farming"? Why not call it productive landscaping given the fact that my grandparent's produced all of the spices necessary for a good cusine in their patio area and had the "greens" replete with mango, avocado, orange, lime, guava, and yes even a Melicoccus bijugatus [that's mamonsillo for the unaware].
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Oct 2011 at 02:20
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

Originally posted by fantasus fantasus wrote:

Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

You want to save the environment? Jail Mrs. Robinson and ban plastics! Long ago "recycling" was far more efficient from glass bottles through paper to scrap metals. The myth of green is asserted by a false polemic.
Why should discussion about this subject necessarily be  "polemical", "false" or "true"?
 
Because of its "disconnect" from economic reality and the notion that one could play at "farming" in the urban landscape while enjoying the substandard constructions that now pass for urban projects. Admit it, Fantasus, modern homo urbanus is fundamentally lazy and has become totally addicted to what is convenient and cheap while littering the landscape with the detritus of these addictions. As recently as just 50 years ago most cities consumed foodstuffs generally produced within a 100 mile radius of its center save for the exotic. "Urban farming"? Why not call it productive landscaping given the fact that my grandparent's produced all of the spices necessary for a good cusine in their patio area and had the "greens" replete with mango, avocado, orange, lime, guava, and yes even a Melicoccus bijugatus [that's mamonsillo for the unaware].
sorry, but it seems difficult to polemise against or even discuss Your point of view as long as it is for me what it is about. Sometimes I think "cynicism" or "fatalism", but perhaps that is completely wrong?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Oct 2011 at 04:45
Fantasus, it is neither polemical nor cynical to discuss "Green Cities" in terms of global physical realities, specially within the bucolic constructs of daily experience within the ambits of Denmark and even all of Scandinavia. Considering that the entire population of a nation such as Denmark is significantly lower than the five boroughs of New York City discussing the "greening" of the urban plane approaches the realm of ecological fantasizing. After all, within the American historical experience the notion of "greening" is what produced suburbia! The actual ecological problem that is at critical stage is "waste disposal" from the byproducts of nuclear tinkering to the proliferation of chemical substitutes for older recyclable materials. All other talk is but diversion and akin to "beautifying" road ways by removing billboards so one can enjoy the beauties of an already unsightly landscape!
 
Were there ancient "green cities"? Were the "hanging gardens" of Babylon forerunners of ecological planning? Premising such demands that one ignore the actual realities of ancient urbanizations, which in terms of numbers were, with few exceptions, equivalent to the population of a contemporary "hi-rise", and engage in futile fancifying.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Oct 2011 at 18:06
Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

Fantasus, it is neither polemical nor cynical to discuss "Green Cities" in terms of global physical realities, specially within the bucolic constructs of daily experience within the ambits of Denmark and even all of Scandinavia. Considering that the entire population of a nation such as Denmark is significantly lower than the five boroughs of New York City discussing the "greening" of the urban plane approaches the realm of ecological fantasizing. After all, within the American historical experience the notion of "greening" is what produced suburbia! The actual ecological problem that is at critical stage is "waste disposal" from the byproducts of nuclear tinkering to the proliferation of chemical substitutes for older recyclable materials. All other talk is but diversion and akin to "beautifying" road ways by removing billboards so one can enjoy the beauties of an already unsightly landscape!
 
Were there ancient "green cities"? Were the "hanging gardens" of Babylon forerunners of ecological planning? Premising such demands that one ignore the actual realities of ancient urbanizations, which in terms of numbers were, with few exceptions, equivalent to the population of a contemporary "hi-rise", and engage in futile fancifying.
There is no disagreement the situation  -  and therefore possible "solution" differ extremely from one part of the world to another. A country like Denmark and many other European countries may seems almost "rural" compared to megacities, but it is rather densely populated if we instead compare with most nations on the American continents, and even US- States.A form of "Suburbia" can be seen as were a very large proportion of populations live at least in Western Europe too - so why not think how to get the best possible suburban settlements?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ramesh V.Naivaruni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Oct 2011 at 16:12
 I for one think that the onus of polluting should be put on companies which is creating large scale pollution. The Complete tax wavier for 1 year for all Green buildings.  The Government with the help of sceintific community, researchers on Green products should bring out a list  of green products which should be used and this should be done without any industry consideration. 
 
Strict implementation, Every roof tops should have space for Organic farming, Rain water harvesting should be the reason for giving any approvals, old high rises should be issued notices to renovate their building with above green initiatiaties.
 
The corporates should be asked to follow organic farming on their roof tops, some incentives may be given for such initiaties.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mable01 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 Sep 2012 at 22:06
I agreed with your idea for these green cities to make them beautiful with such green plantation and make the environment clean.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Oct 2012 at 02:05
As far as I am aware, there is actually a continuing school of civil engineering which tries to put as much greenery into our modern cities as possible. Obviously though that is not happening in Lagos but rather places like NYC (have you seen the sketches/pictures from that metro-park?). Things like that are probably happening all across the globe, though on a smaller scale. What is the inhibiting factor is most likely a lack of funds, for there are few who question the uses that "green" land has. 
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