After the green renovation of the Gehry-designed Santa Monica Place into a fantastic open air mall, the surrounding infrastructure, especially the parking garages, needed an overhaul. The city brought in Brooks + Scarpa (formerly Pugh + Scarpa) to design improvements for the Frank Gehry garages at Santa Monica Place Mall as well as eight other city owned parking structures surrounding the popular 3rd Street Promenade. The eco improvements included adding prefabricatedcement board panels to the exterior of the garages as well as making the area more walkable and pleasant for pedestrians. New ground floor retail spaces were added to the garages, transforming them into dual purpose buildings. And soon, the garages will be topped with a 1,000 solar panel system to generate electricity for the complex.
easteading – the concept of creating autonomous communities at sea – offers a sustainable solution to dealing with abandoned oil rigs and other redundant offshore platforms. In theory, seasteads would be established beyond the territories claimed by national governments, and some would even be mobile. As eccentric as it sounds, there’s a substantial movement to make this form of oceanic dwelling a reality by 2014.
National Geographic’s Daily News gallery put the series of images together, and their volcanic seismologist Steve McNutt explained that there could be three types of volcanic lightning: “Large, spectacular “natural fireworks” sometimes accompany eruptions, along with an intermediate type, which shoots up from a volcano’s vents and reaches lengths of about 1.8 miles (3 kilometers), and finally bolts that can be as short as about three feet (one meter) long and last just a few milliseconds.”