Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
Green Living Technologies: What is Missing in the International Standards?
Project Started: February 2016
Anticipated Project Completion: March 2017
Funding Sponsor: Underwriters Laboratories
Principal Investigator:
Dr. Dario Trabucco, CTBUH
Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Elena Giacomello, Iuav

The CTBUH Research project “Green Living Technologies: What is Missing in the Standards?” has received $ 50,000 in funding from UL Standards to highlight deficiencies in existing international standards and regulations related to green roofs and green façades, including important areas such as fire protection, retaining systems, life cycle considerations, and more. The aim of this research is to identify and address the missing technical requirements for green living technologies (for roofs and façades) in the existing international standards.

Funding Sponsor

Project Milestones
2016, February: Project Announcement

The use of vegetation on buildings and tall buildings is a salient design topic. Several successful implementations of these systems can attest to the recent technical advances that have occurred in the field of agronomy as applied to architecture.

Notable tall building projects integrated with extensive green surfaces (such as ACROS Fukuoka Prefectural Hall in Japan, Bosco Verticale in Milan, and Tree House in Singapore) have already been completed and can therefore provide a rich source of information, experiences, and technical results. At the same time, a large family of fast-growing technological solutions also fall under the so called “green (living) technologies” category,  which includes both simple coverings and sophisticated layering systems.

Green (living) technologies in tall buildings. Left to Right: ACROS Fukuoka Prefectural Hall, Japan; Bosco Verticale, Milan; Tree House, Singapore.
The rising application of greenery in architecture and the realization of successful systems integrated with plants and building components suggest a need for expanding and updating existing standards on various topics. The increasing diffusion of “green living spaces” in buildings, derived by the appreciation of the general public, urban planners, city governments, developers, and architects must also be considered.

As a result of the widespread use of new green living technologies, (in increasingly unusual configurations and ambitious contexts), an adjustment of the current regulations has become a dire necessity, especially concerning safety issues posed by potential fires and vegetation fall, maintenance scheduling and costs, quality standards, and life cycle prevision.

This research will define a set of development guidelines for comprehensive standards on green living technologies, both for roofs and façades.

This research will be conducted in collaboration with key experts from in the tall building industry, nursery production, and construction security.

Contact Information
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