Michigan, United States of America. William McDonough + Partners
A master plan was completed (in 2000) for the renovation and expansion of new manufacturing facilities for the Ford Rouge Centre. One of the aims was for it to become a model of sustainability for the industry sector, so a series of sustainable features were integrated:
·Insulation and energy consumption reduction for climate control was achieved with a 10.4 acre green rooftop consisting of plants, flowers and perennial ground cover (serum).The exhaust fumes were used to produce electrical power with a system called “Fumes to Fuel”. A storm water management system was installed to collect and reuse water. The use of skylights to illuminate the plant floor. The use of a porous material on the parking lot for new trucks absorb rainwater, filters it through layers of stones and reuses it elsewhere in the plant. A system of wet meadow gardens, hedgerow and bio-swales were used to attenuate, cleanse and frame the views of the complex.
Approach The scale and measures taken in this master plan transform the industrial complex and create a landscape that knits the separate buildings and site together as one. But it isn’t only an aesthetic project. The sustainable features manage to reduce water consumption, by the storm water management system; and energy consumption, due to the higher level of insulation under the green rooftop, the attenuating of temperature with the wet meadow gardens, hedgerows and bio-swales, and the natural light provided through the skylights.
Scale The sustainable features are displayed throughout the 600 acres of the industrial’s restoration and master plan.
Program Relaying on a landscape-based infrastructure, requiring a minimum use of pipes, this innovative and design solution created a good case model for sustainable design. It is now recognised as having one of the most iconic green roof installations in the United States.
Challenges and Opportunities Despite rumours of its failure, an assessment and coverage was performed in June 2009, that stated that the green roof remained intact, healthy and with a dynamic mix of plant varieties.The roof vegetation is fertilized once a year during springtime, and only needs irrigating in subsequent summers during prolonged hot or dry periods.It forms part of the display to visitors taking the Ford Rouge Factory Tour throughout the year.