Category Archives: Environmental

Design is Connected India Retreat Weaves Sustainability into Practice

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Sustainability is a key concern for designers and they prefer to use eco-friendly products and materials. They also believe they could weave sustainability in their design projects. This follows a recent survey conducted with key architect and design industry leaders who attended the Design Is Connected Retreat organised by Shaw Contract Group in Goa, India from 9 to 11 October 2015. Shaw Contract Group organised this retreat with the aim to connect with their partners in the Asia Pacific region and India in the aspect of design.

8 out of 10 designers also rated design as the most important consideration when selecting a supplier.

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“The discussions and insights drawn from key leaders in the design and architecture industry have been beneficial to Shaw Contract Group. Following this retreat, we are able to align our product offerings with our suppliers to ensure the Architects and Designers in India are shown our full range of products. This has been helpful in our continual collaboration with India.” said Dan Clark, Managing Director, Asia Pacific, Shaw Contract Group.

“It was a very inspiring event for those in the design field to see such level of work being done on the design, pattern and texture of carpets” said Sabina Reddy, Director, at M Moser Associates.

“The next trend will be moving from geometrical patterns to more abstract patterns with bright colours,” says Raghunath Avutapalli, Senior Architect, DWP Interics, in relation to design trends in 2016.

On creating sustainable designs, Satish Purushan, Senior Architect, STUP Consultants, says that “it is crucial to create products that not only have 100 per cent LEED rating on paper, but are also eco-friendly in terms of practicality in order to raise awareness and promote sustainability across all industries.”

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The Design Is Connected Retreat saw about 50 guests comprising of directors, architects and service providers from more than 20 well-established firms, including DSP, RSP and Space Matrix, come together and exchange their views on upcoming trends in the industry.

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For more information about Shaw’s sustainability initiatives and its continued leadership in the discussion, development and application of sustainable design, please visit our sustainability site.

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MoMA’s COSMO purifies water + powers summer music series

Calling all art lovers, music lovers and Earth lovers:

The MoMA PS1 gallery (dedicated to experimental art) now features an outdoor installation that mechanically uses plants and customized irrigation concepts to filter and purify 3,000 gallons of water, which, once purified, signals the device to glow at its center – providing pulsating light for Warm Up, the gallery’s summer concert series in Long Island City.

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Designed by Andres Jacques/Office for Political Innovation, the concept was realized through the MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program, which spotlights emerging firms doing experimental work.

Learn more about the program and COSMO’s sustainable design in this article on azuremagazine.com

 

 

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Good energy: non-traditional partnerships generate power

When it comes to employing alternative energy sources  and focusing on improved energy efficiency, Shaw Contract Group is in good company. Electric car company Tesla is partnering with several companies, including Jackson Family Wines for the pilot program of  its new industrial battery product, due to officially launch later this summer (a residential version is also underway).

In addition toLEDS in the fermentation room using Tesla’s battery packs for its operations, JFW employs solar arrays at it’s facilities – and the combination will potentially open new doors for self-sustaining systems.

All told, the company has 21 of the commercial PowerPack batteries across six of its wineries, which were installed from late last summer to early this year. By February, they accounted for 4.2 mW of production, or 8.4 mWh of total energy storage capacity.  (For more details, read  the complete fastcompany article ).

Solar is recognized as a mature, reliable energy source and a viable long-term investment. Shaw Contract Group’s carpet tile manufacturing facility in Cartersville, GA, features one of the largest commercial solar panel installations in the southeast – generating 1.4 million kilowatt hours of power annually (approximately 100 homes) which helps power the facility and its processes.  Company wide bench marking for our footprint is published annually in Shaw’s Sustainability Report.

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Viva the alternative! Design is good energy.

 

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Dunbarton High School Named Greenest School on Earth

Congratulations to Dunbarton High School in Pickering, Ontario, Canada, for earning the title of the 2015 Greenest School on Earth. This annual competition, sponsored by the Global Coalition for Green Schools (an initiative of the Center for Green Schools at USGBC), recognizes a K-12 school for achievement in its environmental impact, human health and ecoliteracy.

I was honored to be one of the judges for the competition and amazed at what these schools are doing to make a difference in their school and the world. Choosing a single winner was extremely difficult. While reviewing submissions, the jury discovered so many incredible things being done around the world. Dunbarton emerged the winner because of its success meeting each of the three pillars of the competition.

Because the buildings were built in the 1960s, the school focused its efforts to reduce environmental impact on inexpensive retrofits (paid by fundraising efforts from the Environmental Club) and behavioral changes that involve students, teachers, faculty, staff, and the community. I love the fact that the school plans to spend a portion of the prize money on a garden that will be 20% for its own use and 80% for the local food bank.

For the human health component, the school is looking long-term, with a seven-year campus biodiversity program to provide trees to shade an outdoor classroom. The commitment to health continues with providing nutritious options in the cafeteria and vending machines, as well as water fountains with reusable water bottles.

One of the initiatives that separated Dunbarton from the rest is how it’s addressing the remaining pillar – ecoliteracy. Students take what they learn and apply it to their school. For example, science classes monitor school and campus air quality, local stream water quality and school electricity use. The students then use this data to create a conservation plan.

Congratulations Environmental Council

​Pickering Area Trustee Chris Braney congratulating the Environmental Council on their award – Greenest School on Earth.

Seeing the resourceful leadership that went into these entries reinforces our sense of pride in being a partner with the Center for Green Schools. To support the Center and their initiatives, including the Greenest School on Earth competition, go to centerforgreenschools.org and check out Shaw Contract Group’s Cut & Compose collection, 3 tile and 2 broadloom styles for which we are donating 1.5% of the proceeds to the Center for Green Schools.

 

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Taking Shape: Education carpet collection nods to Matisse

The concept of cutting shapes and elements may seem juvenile, but painter Henri Matisse did so in a way that a new art form was born. The French painter shifted to the world of cut-outs as chronic illness diminished his ability to work the paintbrush. By cutting and creating, the artist was truly taking the idea of form back to it’s roots. His creations varied from simple to abstract, while playing with varying color, contrast, shapes and sizes.

“The Parakeet and the Mermaid” (1952), gouache on paper, cut and pasted, and charcoal on white paper, by Henri Matisse.

This same concept is reflected in Shaw Contract Group’s new education collection Cut & Compose, as abstract elements are cut, rotated, deconstructed and composed to form the graphic aesthetic found in these designs. Through this collection, learning environments are transformed into motivational spaces and a bold statement is made.

Read more about this collection and its contribution to the environment here, and learn how these products support the Green Apple Initiative at the USGBC’s Center for Green Schools.

 

 

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