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Landscape Design

Landscape Design


The evolution of the educational landscape

Photo credit: Maglin Site Furniture
Photo credit: Maglin Site Furniture

From the first formal lectures held in medieval universities, to the online mobile classrooms of today, learning spaces are always growing to meet the needs of society; a study lounge can be a classroom; a cafeteria can become a library. Students can work from almost any location, on or off campus. Educational facilities strive to keep students engaged with their campus, and are embracing the notion of flexible learning environments. Single purpose spaces are becoming obsolete, and many facilities have moved closer to building comfortable and versatile environments that foster collaboration for their students.

An example of a school that has taken student requirements to heart is the University of Chicago. "They recognized the need to redesign their learning environments to meet the needs of today’s students by creating learning spaces outside the walls of the lecture hall, library cubicles, and classrooms."i The flexible and customizable products that Maglin Site Furniture provides have played a part in helping the University reach this goal. "We needed specially designed cluster seating for a project, and I just wasn’t finding what I wanted in the market, so I called (Maglin Sales Manager) Jill Roberts and we began working on the design," said Richard Bumstead, Associate Director for Campus Environment at the University of Chicago. "The final product ended up being a home run! It’s fun, innovative, and works so well in the location."

Maglin provided custom versions of their MLPT1100B-W cluster seating to "jazz up" a prominent location in the heart of the University of Chicago campus. "We did a twist on the standard model and literally twisted the frame and used HDPC (high density paper composite) to create circular table tops and seats," explains Jill Roberts. ADA compliance was also required, so a matching 3-seat cluster unit was created. When asked why he wanted to work with Maglin on this project, Bumstead said, "The Maglin team is great fun to work with — the entire group is engaged in the work they do and more than willing to take a look at all requests for special orders or customization of products."

"The Maglin team is great fun to work with"

With regard to working on school campuses, Roberts stated, "Maglin loves to be involved in education projects! They give us the opportunity to assist in the creation of spaces and overall environments. Campuses have changed over time. Students and learning facilities don’t just demand seating and trash collection anymore — they look for innovative spaces that promote collaboration, engagement, and community."

In order to keep up in today’s mobile world, learning spaces must be able to adapt quickly and easily. The flexibility of Maglin Site Furniture’s products, as well as their readiness to take on special projects, makes Maglin the right partner for your education plans.

Company: Maglin Site Furniture

Product: Cluster Seating

Of: Article originally written for and distributed by Maglin Site Furniture

Source: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/evolution-educational-landscape-camilla-hansen

Tags: Exterior Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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New from Thomas Steele: Monona benches, chairs, side tables and litter receptables

New from Thomas Steele: Monona benches, chairs, side tables and litter receptables

The Monona bench is perfect for any relaxed outdoor space. It features top-notch materials and has a fully welded steel tubular frame. The Monona™ bench seating materials features Accoya, Ipe Wood, and Recycled Plastic profiles. The Steel frame can be finished with powder coat paint or hot dip galvanize.

The new Monona chair is perfect for any relaxed outdoor space. It features top-notch materials and has a fully welded steel tubular frame. The Monona™ chair seating materials features Accoya, Ipe Wood, and Recycled Plastic profiles. The Steel frame can be finished with powder coat paint or hot dip galvanize.

The Monona youth chair is perfect for any relaxed outdoor space. It features top-notch materials and has a fully welded steel tubular frame. The Monona™ youth chair seating materials features Accoya, Ipe Wood, and Recycled Plastic profiles. The Steel frame can be finished with powder coat paint or hot dip galvanize.

The Monona™ litter receptacles are durable with a fresh clean design. Relax and let  Monona™ receptacles do your dirty work. Monona receptacles are constructed with the following materials; 1 X 6" wood profiles and a steel plate all welded frame.

Architects/Engineers
Whether your area of expertise is residential, commercial, industrial, or landscape architecture or engineering, Thomas Steele products offer you creative, innovative, site furnishing solutions to meet your clients’ needs. Our six different family styles are the perfect complement to any setting. We can help you provide the best possible combinations to suit your and your clients’ requirements. Spending a few minutes on our web site can save you hours of research. Cut your specification time while getting site amenities that set the standard for craftsmanship, durability, and aesthetics. Partner with Thomas Steele for site furnishings that reflect your vision.

Company: Thomas Steele

Product: Monona Series

Source: http://www.thomas-steele.com/

Tags: Exterior Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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Waldorf™ Benches

Isn't she a beauty?! Thomas Steele's Waldorf bench is a great and classic piece that we know you will love!
Isn't she a beauty?! Thomas Steele's Waldorf bench is a great and classic piece that we know you will love!

The new Waldorf bench is elegant with sensible function. It features top-notch materials and construction. The Waldorf™ bench frames are made of durable cast, and come with a wide variety of seating materials. The Waldorf™ bench seating materials feature 5/8” Diameter Steel Rod or ¼ x 1 ½” Steel Bar or 1 x 2 1/2 and 1 x 3 Board Profiles. The frame is constructed of 3 ½” Wide Cast. The benches are available in lengths of 2, 4, 5, 6, and 8 feet. The 8 foot bench has an optional center arm and leg. Seating material choices include Steel Rod, Horizontal Straps, Vertical Straps, Ipe Wood, and Recycled Plastic, with powder coat finish in a wide choice of colors.

Company: Thomas Steele

Product: Benches

Source: http://www.thomas-steele.com/ShopSiteFurnishings/Benches/tabid/212/ProductID/89/Default.aspx

Tags: Exterior Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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How To Avoid The Most Common Problems With Commercial Lampposts

How To Avoid The Most Common Problems With Commercial Lampposts

There are three main components to commercial lampposts: The actual post, the lighting fixture, and the light bulb. The post, the fixture and the light bulb can create a multitude of common issues that impact the functionality of your commercial lighting systems.

Common Problems With Light Bulbs

There are a number of problems that arise from using traditional incandescent bulbs as well as CFL bulbs. While LED bulbs can also have issues, they tend to be fewer and far between. LED bulbs are the most energy efficient, cost effective and long lasting option on the market. That’s why most businesses have already made the switch. According to Energy.gov, LED bulbs have the greatest potential impact on energy savings in the US.  By the year 2027, it’s estimated that LEDs could save over $33 billion a year at today’s electrical costs.

Common Problems With CFL Bulbs

Problem: Bulb burns out without cause.
Some CFL bulbs are defective, in which case that could be your issue and you just need a replacement bulb. Higher quality bulbs are less likely to fail. You should also check the packaging to make sure the bulb works with your particular fixture. Some bulbs are only meant to be used indoors and/or not with dimmers.

Problem: The bulb burns out prematurely.
When your bulb goes out earlier than it should, it may have something to do with vibrations and impact, both of which CFL bulbs are sensitive to. These vibrations can come from something as seemingly simple as a door routinely slamming shut. If lights are frequently used, an LED bulb may offer a better solution.

Problem: The bulb is flickering or buzzing.
CFL bulbs rely on a ballast to spark voltage and provide light. If the ballast is not supplying sufficient electricity, the bulb may start buzzing and flickering. If the ballast is faulty or loose this issue may also occur. Try changing the bulb and if the problem persists the issue is likely the ballast. You will need to call an electrician for repairs.

Common Problems With Incandescent Bulbs

Problem: The bulb burns out faster than it should.
The bulb you are using might not have the correct wattage for the fixture. Double check the rating on your fixture and use a bulb that supplies the appropriate wattage. Using incorrectly matched bulbs and fixtures will result in the bulb overheating and burning out much sooner than it should.

Problem: The bulb is not turning on at all.
The bulb could be burned out, or if it’s new it could be faulty. It may also just be too loose in the socket to form a proper connection. If a new bulb or tighter connection doesn’t address the problem, the issue might be with the fixture, outlet, cord or the switch could be defective.

Problem: The bulb is flickering.
If the bulb is loose it may cause the light to flicker. If a ceiling fan is attached to the fixture, vibrations from the fan may cause the bulbs to jiggle loose and subsequently flicker. If the bulb or connection is corroded, this can also create flickering. Other issues might relate to the cord, fixture, outlet or a defective switch.

Common Problems With LED Bulbs

Problem: The bulb burns out too early.
LED bulbs should last much longer than any other bulbs. But there are cheap LED bulbs on the market that do not last as long as high quality LED bulbs. These cheaper bulbs are not able to disperse heat as quickly as they create it, which ultimately leads to an early demise.

Problem: The bulb will not work with a dimmer.
Not all LED bulbs work with a standard dimmer. That’s because the wattage is lower than what’s necessary for dimming features to work.  Look for LED bulbs with a dimmable LED driver and use electronic dimmers as opposed to magnetic dimmers.

Common Problems With Light Posts

Your lampposts are just as important as the bulbs inside of them, without one the other isn’t going to do its job. Plus, lampposts create a style that reflects your business, which means you don’t want an unattractive fixture.

Problem: Lamppost is breaking down quicker than expected.
Our resin-based lampposts are far superior to traditional lampposts. In general, most light poles have seams and the inside of the base is neither powder coated nor enamel finished. As a result, it’s very easy for moisture and salt to get inside and create a world of problems. We manufacture our lampposts differently so that they are resistant to moisture, salt, corrosion, impact damage and so forth.

Problem: The post base is corroded or damaged.
The first place that traditional lampposts show wear and tear is at the bottom of the pole. That’s because this is where water has the greatest chance to penetrate through surfaces. It’s also where the most bumps occur from cars, pedestrians, golf carts and so forth. It only takes a bump or two to form tiny fractures in the surface that allow moisture to easily sneak inside and create further damage.

Our specially manufactured lampposts do not rust or corrode and are very resistant to impact damage. Yet, just because the bottom of your lamppost is looking less than its best, doesn’t mean you need to invest in replacing your entire lamppost. That’s why we created a lamppost base that can be attached to almost any standard sized pole. Our lamppost base adds years onto your lightpole by preventing additional corrosion and other issues from further damaging the post. Plus, it dramatically improves outward appearances. Our motto is: If you can’t replace, rebase! Learn more: Light Post Bases

Problem: Lampposts are not providing sufficient light.

Your property likely requires more than just lampposts to be considered sufficiently lit. Tree ring lights, in-ground lights and bullet lights are just some of your many lighting fixture options. Adding a variety of different lighting fixtures helps evenly disperse light throughout your property, shinning light on different heights and angles. Shop our full collection of long lasting landscape lighting: Landscape Lighting

Common Problems With Light Fixtures

Light Fixtures offer a multitude of design solutions for a wide array of lighting installations.  Whether one is trying to achieve a particular theme feature by selecting a traditional or modern design or one is selecting a fixture that offers the correct light distribution for the application, there are fixtures to solve most challenges.  Be sure to ask if the city or community participates in Dark-Sky initiatives or if it’s a coastal project, if there are Turtle-Friendly regulations to comply with.  A TerraCast Lighting representative can help guide you through these challenges.

Company: TerraCast Products LLC

Product: Classic Lamps Posts

Source: http://www.terracastproducts.com/avoid-common-problems-commercial-lampposts/

Tags: Landscape Design | Lighting

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New designs from Victor Stanley: Camille Table & Benches

New designs from Victor Stanley: Camille Table & Benches

In the true spirit of the Reverie collection, Camille provides functionality with a minimalistic design aesthetic. Its slim profile, solid steel frame with exceptionally high recycled content, and use of genuine IPE wood slats, makes for sleek design, with longevity in mind.

The 31 in (787 mm) tall tables are available with either a 3 x 3 ft (.91 x .91 m), 4 x 3 ft (1.2 x .91 m), 6 x 3 ft (1.8 x .91 m) or 8 x 3 ft (2.4 x .91 m) rectangle table top. 8 ft (2.4 m) length includes center leg.

Backless bench is available in 2, 4, 6 or 8 ft (.61, 1.2, 1.8 or 2.4 m) length. 8 ft (2.4 m) length includes center leg.

Company: Victor Stanley

Source: http://www.victorstanley.com/product/camt/

Tags: Furniture | Landscape Design

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8 Questions You Need Answered Before Buying Commercial Grade Outdoor Furniture

8 Questions You Need Answered Before Buying Commercial Grade Outdoor Furniture

Durability, strength, appearance, and overall maintenance are some of the most important things to consider before purchasing just any outdoor commercial grade furnishings.

There is a difference between residential furniture and commercial furniture. Commercial site furnishings get a lot more wear and tear, and as a result need to be much stronger. After all, you could be held liable if something happens to one of your customers while using furniture at your place of business.

Commercial grade furnishings need to be strong enough to support all sizes of people. The last thing you want is for someone to fall and become injured due to an improperly made bench or chair.

Ask These Questions When Buying Commercial Grade Outdoor Furniture

1. How Durable Is It?

Quality commercial furniture should be highly durable. While a regular old plastic chair may last a few years in someone’s backyard, it may not last more than a week at a commercial location. For one, it will get consistent use day in and day out. Secondly, people are much harder on commercial furniture than on their furniture at home. Commercial furniture must be prepared to take on constant hits, knocks and stains.

2. Is The Design Functional And Representative Of Your Clientele?

What age group does your establishment serve? A preschool is going to need different site furnishings than a retirement home or trendy restaurant. The outdoor furniture you purchase must align with the needs of your target audience. For instance, benches are available in different heights and sizes; some are backless while others offer additional back support.

Know all of your options and ask yourself: Which is going to be the most comfortable, safe and overall effective option for the people that’ll use it most?

Do you want chairs attached to benches or welded into the ground? Or, do you prefer more portable options? If your business is located in an area with theft concerns, you may want to consider the attached option to help prevent potential criminal activity.

3. Is It Made From Recycled Materials?

Going green is on everyone’s radar right now, which means you’re in luck when it comes to finding quality commercial furnishings made from recycled materials. Our products are recyclable and they are made from recycled materials. Our darkest furnishings can be made from 100% post-consumer recycled materials. We value the American economy, which is why we manufacture all of our products right here in the States with a focus on eco-friendly and sustainable practices.

4. How Much Weight Can Furniture Withstand?

Commercial furniture must be able to withstand more weight than your typical residential furniture. It’s always a good idea to inquire about weight limits to ensure there are no issues.

5. Is 5% Of Your Seating Wheelchair Accessible?

The Americans with Disabilities Act enforces the implementation of wheelchair and handicapped accessible facilities for all businesses. This important Act covers everything from movie theaters to restaurants to grocery stores. Regardless of business size or location, if it’s in the US and open to the public, it must comply with the laws outlined by the ADA. This applies to restaurants, playgrounds, patios, picnic areas and so forth.

There are no “grandfather provisions” that can get existing facilities around these regulations, which includes doors, entrances, parking lots and many other aspects of your business, including fixed seating and tables.

If your business provides tables, benches or other seating that is affixed to the wall or floor, you must ensure that 5% are wheelchair accessible. If there are less than 20 tables provided, you must have at least one that is wheelchair accessible. One way to accomplish this is to use portable chairs that can be moved out of the way in exchange for a wheelchair.

A wheelchair-accessible table is no more than 34-inches tall and no shorter than 28-inches tall. The distance between the floor and the underside of the table must measure at least 27-inches. If you have multiple wheelchair-friendly site furnishings, they must be evenly distributed. It’s illegal to segregate people with disabilities to one section of your establishment.

6. How Much Maintenance Will It Require?

Maintenance will vary based upon the materials used to craft outdoor furniture. Some materials require a lot more maintenance than others. For instance, wood furniture is going to require regular coats of protective sealant and consistent inspections to ensure it is not splintering or rotting.

On the other hand, our specially formulated resin made from LLDPE is one of the lowest maintenance materials on the market. There is virtually nothing you have to do to preserve it, and it’ll last a long time without any additional effort or maintenance. Not to mention, it can be made to imitate a wide variety of materials, such as stone, without the added maintenance concerns.

7. How Long Will It Last?

The average life expectancy of commercial grade outdoor furnishings will clue you in to when you’ll have to replace furniture. Outfitting a business in all new furniture is no small expense, so it’s better for your bank account if furniture lasts a long time. Inquire about warranties in order to get a good idea of how long furniture really lasts. For instance, if a company claims a certain chair can last 10-years, but it is only covered by a 3-month warranty, it’s time to get suspicious.

8. Is It Made By TerraCast?

TerraCast Products remain the proud leaders of long-lasting, sustainable commercial site furnishings for outdoors or indoors. All of our products are made in the US using the highest quality materials and most sustainable manufacturing processes. We take great pride in the long-term durability of our unmatched resin-based products.

Company: TerraCast Products LLC

Source: http://www.terracastproducts.com/8-questions-need-answered-buying-commercial-grade-outdoor-furniture/

Tags: Exterior Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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Battery Life: introducing a new way to energize your outdoor space

Battery Life: introducing a new way to energize your outdoor space

Energize your outdoor space with The Battery Collection from Maglin. Featuring the exclusive chair design of New York’s The Battery Conservancy, this collection delivers the perfect combination of fresh, unique design and comfortable ease.

Comfort and style go hand in hand- The Battery Collection lets guests mingle, move around and gather in arrangements of any size, from solitary to sociable.

Recharge your space with a splash of color

Available in five vibrant colors, The Battery Collection lets you mix and match for the effect you want. (Also available in Maglin standard colors.)

Flower Power

Chairs Designer Andrew Jones created The Battery Chair in response to The Conservancy’s need for moveable outdoor seating on the Oval Lawn. His model was crowned the winner of The Conservancy’s chair design competition, having been selected out of 679 entries from 15 countries. Imagining a field of chairs creating a changeable, exciting landscape, he developed a design that is poised to become a contemporary icon: playful yet refined, comfortable yet elegant.

Contact Maglin today to learn more about The Battery Collection.

Company: Maglin Site Furniture

Source: http://www.maglin.com/products/battery/batterycollection.html

Tags: Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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An orderly revolution in waste control

Introducing the Victor Stanley Relay™ Sensor and Service, which continuously monitors fill level. But that’s just the beginning. Powered by Street Level Sensing™ technology, Relay also…

Street Level Sensing™

  • Continuously monitors fill level, weight, location and collection status
  • Tracks location via GPS, so you always know where receptacles were moved and where they belong
  • Allows you to log on and view collection data in real-time and historically
  • Boosts efficiency in planning, scheduling and routing collections
  • Saves an estimated 20-40% in collection expenses
  • Is built for reliability and durability, along with everything we manufacture

Victor Stanley Relay™ uses technology, sensors and web services which we designed, built, and own, so you can rely on our product whether you retrofit Relay or make it part of your new receptacle orders. Make a statement about the way your community handles waste. Talk to your Victor Stanley rep today.

An orderly revolution in waste control

Victor Stanley Street Level Sensing™

An all-in-one solution, Victor Stanley Relay ™ features fully integrated sensors within new and existing Victor Stanley litter receptacles and recycling stations, wireless communications, and dedicated web portal for access to container conditions. Utilizing our 54-years of experience, we designed our proprietary Street Level Sensing ™ technology to meet the challenges site furnishings face in high-use, commercial and urban environments at the street level. This means that fill level, weight, system temperature, container location, and collection status are continuously monitored — and real‐time container conditions are automatically transmitted to the Victor Stanley Relay ™ Service using standard cellular networks. To maintain aesthetics, Victor Stanley Relay ™ Sensors can be hidden within any Victor Stanley side loading litter receptacle or recycling station. But smart design is only part of the story because our sensors are designed and built to remain reliable and accurate even in harsh environmental conditions. And they work with any type of waste (general trash, mixed recyclables, paper, glass, metals, etc.) while remaining out of sight, economical, and ecologically friendly

Company: Victor Stanley

Product: Litter Receptacles

Source: http://www.victorstanley.com/product/relay/

Tags: Landscape Design | Recycling | Safety

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Smart Ways to Upgrade Your Deck

Smart Ways to Upgrade Your Deck

Your deck project is considered one of the best places to spend your home improvement dollars. Investment motives aside, our decks provide hours of enjoyment with friends and family, so it should no longer be at the bottom of your home improvement wish list.

Define the Entrance

While you may do most of your walking on and off your deck from your home’s patio door, if your deck has stairs down to the backyard, make that second entryway as inviting as possible. Create a defined walkway with gravel and pavers, and plant bushed and/pr flowers on each side of the stairs for an inviting path onto your deck.

A Built-In Bench

A built-in bench not only provides visual appeal, but some practical advantages as well. It efficiently utilizes your space for extra seating. It can also provide extra storage space underneath the seating. Make sure to include comfortable cushions that can be stored below when the weather is bad.

Fuller Sound

While various conventional music solutions may do the job for your outdoor entertaining needs, you can create a fuller and more sophisticated experience with a weatherproof built-in sound system. Whether they are hung above or blended into the scenery as “speaker rocks,” you can have your deck or your entire backyard wired with your favorite music.

Water Feature

Take your relaxation to the next level with the soothing sounds of a water feature. if your deck isn’t large enough to feature a fountain to your liking, you can consider a small table top version or install a bigger one nearby where you can still enjoy its visual and audible beauty.

Cover a Portion of Your Deck

Covering an area of your deck, whether it’s simply an umbrella on your table or a wooden pergola partially covering your deck, can make it easier to entertain when the weather isn’t perfect, or if you just want to provide a little respite from the heat of the sun.

Cable Railing

All decks more than a couple feet off the ground have to come with railing to be up to code. But that doesn’t mean you have to settle for the conventional route. If you are a DIY-er, You can cut your cost by ordering a kit and installing it yourself

Grow Herbs

If you love to cook and may be interested in growing some of your own ingredients, growing herbs can be fun, while providing extra visual appeal to your deck. more importantly, it will add a little fragrance backyard.

Stain Your Deck

There are a number of wood staining options for your deck. They vary base on color, opacity, to fit your stylistic needs. Not only will it visually transform your deck, but it will provide protection from the elements and help your deck last for many years.

Company: Stainless Cable & Railing Inc.

Source: http://site.stainlesscablerailing.com/blog/smart-ways-to-upgrade-your-deck/

Tags: Landscape Design | Railing System

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Turn your backyard into a haven

Introducing the NuTone Haven™ Backyard Lighting & Mosquito Repellent System

Turn your backyard into a haven

Don't let biting mosquitoes keep you from enjoying time outdoors with family and friends! The NuTone Haven™ Backyard Lighting & Mosquito Repellent System features innovative landscape fixtures that provide season-long, effective protection from mosquitoes without the hassle of sprays, messy traps to clean, or fuels to deal with. Each fixture provides 110 square feet of coverage and is safe to use in any outdoor environment.

Light and Mosquito Repellent Fixture

Haven Backyard Light & Mosquito Repellent Fixture combines attractive, efficient LED lighting with mosquito repellency, to enhance your patio, deck or yard. Includes one repellent cartridge.

EFFECTIVE: Haven’s patented mosquito protection system provides protection within 15 minutes of use and is effective against all types of mosquitoes, including the Aedes aegypti mosquito, a known carrier of the Zika virus.
CONVENIENT: Odorless, silent, invisible during use – no smelly oils, smoke, or zapping sounds to disturb you.
SAFE: Child-resistant fixture opens with screwdriver. Repellent won’t harm plants, flowers, shrubs or lawns.
SIMPLE TO USE: As easy as turning on the lights to say goodbye to biting mosquitoes.
EASY TO INSTALL: Each fixture is designed for easy insertion into cable connectors and comes with adaptors to fit most existing wiring systems and transformers.

Mosquito Repellent Fixture

The Haven Mosquito Repellent Fixture can be used to repel mosquitoes where lighting is not needed. Easily added to an existing low voltage lighting installation, the Haven Mosquito Repellent fixture offers the same patented mosquito protection system in a discreet, low-profile design that blends in to any landscape. Includes one repellent cartridge.

Timer/Control

The timer/control allows programming of two circuits of up to four fixtures for automatic operation, either by time of day or by Solar Sensor. (For example: set lights to turn on at dusk and remain on for 5 hours; set repellent to turn on at 7 pm and off at 9 pm.)

Repellent Cartridge

Easily replaceable cartridges are available in single and four packs. Each repellent cartridge provides season-long mosquito protection and lasts 90 days when used 2.4 hours per day, providing convenient protection from mosquitoes: no batteries, candles, butane, or external fuels required, no spraying to schedule, no messy traps to empty.

Company: Broan-NuTone LLC

Source: http://www.nutone.com/haven

Tags: Landscape Design | Lighting | Safety

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The Rise of Outdoor Lighting: Enhancing Aesthetics and Extending Entertainment

The 2015 Houzz Landscaping & Garden Trends Study [1] revealed that renovating outdoor living spaces continues to be a high priority for homeowners: “Over half of homeowners who are upgrading their outdoor spaces spend six or more hours there per week (51%). Relaxing, gardening and entertaining are the top three uses of the space.” Given these facts, the rise of outdoor lighting is no surprise!

The Rise of Outdoor Lighting: Enhancing Aesthetics and Extending Entertainment

The 2015 Houzz Landscaping & Garden Trends Study[1] revealed that renovating outdoor living spaces continues to be a high priority for homeowners: “Over half of homeowners who are upgrading their outdoor spaces spend six or more hours there per week (51%). Relaxing, gardening and entertaining are the top three uses of the space.”

This finding is no surprise, really. As our lives get busier, we tend to want places in our homes where we can unwind, with nature often the conduit.

The Houzz report further noted that as outdoor living continues to be a high priority, a trend taking center stage is outdoor lighting. The report says, “Outdoor lighting is the most common [system] upgrade, whether it is LED (28%), solar (23%) or other (17%).”

The rise of outdoor lighting is motivated by a rising interest in aesthetics and in home entertainment.

Outdoor Lighting: Enhancing Aesthetics & Landscape Design

Gone are the days of one light fixture at the front door and another at the back. Today’s luminary options are practically endless. Artisan gas fire pit tables and beautiful rope-lit water features serve as backyard focal points in neighborhoods across the country, while string lighting under the pergola and lighting integrated within the flower beds can serve as a soft and subtle backdrop.

Outdoor Lighting: Extending Entertainment

Integrating outdoor lighting into a landscape design allows homeowners to enjoy their beautiful outdoor space for an extended period of time. These innovative designs provide folks the ability to enjoy their space even when the sun goes down.

Even where no landscape lighting exists, post accent lights, as seen in the photo, can create the perfect ambiance for evening entertainment. Often, these lights are compatible with third-party dimmers and switches, so you can create the perfect level of lighting for any situation.

What’s next on the horizon for outdoor living? Only time will tell. However, we predict the rise of outdoor lighting is not fading anytime soon. This is due, in part, to advancements in LED technology and people’s desire to create beautiful outdoor spaces, increase home safety and security and find more ways to utilize their outdoor space – no matter the season.

[1] Source: 2015 Houzz Landscaping Study

Company: Feeney, Inc

Source: http://media.feeneyinc.com/blog/the-rise-of-outdoor-lighting-enhancing-aesthetics-and-extending-entertainme

Tags: Landscape Design | Lighting

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Slip Resistant Aluminum Grating Utilized on ASLA Green Roof

Slip Resistant Aluminum Grating Utilized on ASLA Green Roof

The Situation:

A general contractor was chosen by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) to provide grating for ASLA’s green roof at their headquarters in Washington D.C. The green roof is a part of the ASLA’s commitment to promote environmentally friendly designs to make green roofs a more widely accepted option for architects and contractors.  The 3,000 sq. ft. green roof will grow a variety of plants and also have a viewing area for the public.  The ASLA was looking for a walking surface that would allow plants to grow up and through the floor surface to maximize the roof space, allow people to walk on the space without damaging the plants and for a product that would remain slip resistant against transpiration from the growing plants.  The general contractor contacted Ohio Gratings for a flooring solution.

The Solution:

SlipNOT®slip resistant aluminum grating was chosen as the optimal grating for the project.  Slip resistant aluminum was the ideal substrate because it is a light weight material that reduced the overall weight of the grating on the roof while still being extremely durable.  The aluminum coating also remains slip resistant against transpiration from plants and other outdoor elements providing a safe walking area for pedestrians.  SlipNOT® slip resistant aluminum grating is corrosion resistant and will be able to withstand installation in an outside environment with minimal maintenance.  Ohio Gratings worked extensively with the general contractor to provide the appropriate dimensions for the project.

The Impact:

SlipNOT® aluminum grating has provided the American Society of Landscape Architects with an aesthetically pleasing slip resistant walking surface for the green roof.  The aluminum grating has proven to be the ideal solution to help the ASLA’s showcase their green roof.

Download this case study as a PDF

Company: SlipNOT® Metal Safety Flooring Div.

Source: http://www.slipnot.com/industries/commercial/case-studies/

Tags: Landscape Design | Metal | Safety | Sustainability

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How To Upgrade Light Poles With Decorative Bases

How To Upgrade Light Poles With Decorative Bases

Are your light poles looking old, ugly and worn down? Instead of replacing light poles, you can restore them to like new by adding a decorative base. As we like to say, if you can’t replace it, re-base it!

Light posts are susceptible to all kinds of damage, and many common materials used to manufacture light posts are not good at standing up to these elements without incurring obvious signs of wear and tear.

Generally the worst of the damage forms at the base of the pole, which is right where everyone looks. The top of the pole may look just fine, but since all people really see is the middle to bottom portion of the pole it looks overdue for replacement. This can impact the first impression people gather about a location. If the lighting fixtures appear rusted and old, people may assume all kinds of things.

Our special resin-blend is made from Linear Low Density Polyethylene. This material is specially formulated to resist rust, corrosion, impact damage and many more things typical light post materials are damaged by. Our decorative bases offer the perfect solution to removing an eyesore and preventing it from happening again, all without actually having to replace your light poles.

How To Fix Unsightly Light Poles Without Replacing

Time and time again we meet with clients that don’t want to replace their entire collection of light poles, but are faced with some serious eyesores. Our decorative resin bases for light poles offer the perfect cost-effective solution.

Decorative bases can be fit to any standard sized pole, with a diameter no larger than 7.25”. As a result the light post looks like new despite the fact it originally looked like it needed to retire.

Why TerraCast Decorative Bases?

Our decorative bases are made from a unique material that outlasts the competition and provides a high-end look made to fit with your exact style and vision.

Our light pole bases are:

  • Strong
  • Eco-friendly
  • Cost Effective
  • Maintenance-free
  • Resistant to graffiti
  • Guaranteed for up to 10-years
  • Lightweight
  • Durable
  • UV stabilized to resist fading
  • Resistant to chips and cracks

The Importance Of Resin

It all starts with the materials we use to craft all our products, including our decorative light pole bases. There are no other light poles on the market as durable as our resin fixtures. Our manufacturing process creates a lightweight material that is very difficult to damage, and is resistant to rust, corrosion and stains. As a result, our products outlast many popular materials including aluminum, fiberglass and polyurethane foam.

If the base of light poles are showing signs of rust, discoloration, chips or other damages it is likely because they are: a) really old, or, b) not made from materials meant to withstand the elements for more than a couple of seasons. You might be surprised to discover just how many residential and commercial light poles are made to look good but only for a limited time.

Strength Matters

Light posts are susceptible to all kinds of wear and tear, regardless if they are located in the middle of a grassy field or on the side of the street. Resin is made to stand up to all of the elements standard materials are not.

Light fixtures positioned in grass are susceptible to being hit by weed whackers. This is a pretty common way for the base of poles to get chipped, allowing damage to set in. Water, animal urine and anything else can get right inside the post through these cracks, even if the chip is too small to see with the naked eye. As a result, corrosion, rust and discoloration may take place.

Our resin is highly resistant to cracks, even from fast moving weed whackers. That means your light posts are no longer in danger from landscapers.

If your light posts are situated on a busy street they are susceptible to being hit by vehicles or golf carts. Brittle materials often used to manufacture light posts are not able to withstand impact damage, cracking or completely splitting on contact.

Our unique material is made to bend with impact so that it can expand and retract without the same risks for cracking and breaking.

Eco-Friendly & Made In The USA

Our products are proudly made in the USA with eco-friendly practices. We can provide product with up to 100% recycled material. Plus, our products are recyclable.

UV Stabilized

Thanks to the UV stabilizers we add to the product makeup our light poles are far less susceptible to fading than the competition. This keeps your light poles looking great longer.

Graffiti Resistant

Adding a resin base to your light pole adds new life and value, but what happens if someone comes and puts graffiti on it? Thankfully, our non-porous material does not absorb the stain past the first layer. As a result, it’s incredibly easy to wipe away graffiti without enlisting the help of professional or costly supplies.

Urine Resistant

How often do dogs pee on your light poles? Maybe you think never, but chances are some animal, domesticated or wild, is peeing around your property. The unique content of urine creates extensive damage to poles made from most materials, except for our specially formulated resin.

Score the look of new light poles for a fraction of the cost by adding our durable decorative bases to old, rusting, or rundown fixtures. There is nothing else on the market like our resin products, and our light poles and decorative bases stand in bright proof of that.

Company: TerraCast Products LLC

Source: http://www.terracastproducts.com/how-to-upgrade-light-poles-with-decorative-bases/

Tags: Landscape Design | Lighting

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New Colors for DesignRail® Kits!

New Colors for DesignRail® Kits!

DesignRail® Rail Kits for Level and Stair Railings

DesignRail® Aluminum Rail Kits are designed for fast and easy installation of railings with CableRail stainless steel infill between a customer’s posts.

  • CableRail Ready: Pre-drilled picket to support 1/8 inch CableRail by Feeney stainless steel cables (sold separately)
  • Easy Field Assembly: Rails and pickets can be trimmed and assembled on-site using pre-engineered components that snap and screw together: no welding, grinding or special finishing
  • Level rail kits are designed for residential railings up to 42 inches high with up to 6-foot spacing between posts
  • Stair rail kits can accommodate up to 6-foot maximum length stairways with slopes between 29 and 34 degrees and a height of 36 inches
  • Each 6ft. kit contains a top rail, bottom rail, pre-drilled intermediate picket, snap caps, and installation screws

Company: Feeney, Inc

Source: http://www.feeneyinc.com/Architectural/DesignRail-Kits

Tags: Landscape Design

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Cochran Expands and Enhances Landscape Forms Lifestyle Furniture for Terrace Life

Cochran Expands and Enhances Landscape Forms Lifestyle Furniture for Terrace Life

Landscape Forms is pleased to introduce the Cochran group, relaxed outdoor furniture designed by award-winning landscape architect Andrea Cochran. The new product joins the Terrace Life group, Landscape Forms lifestyle furniture for sophisticated, high-value outdoor spaces. Landscape Forms President, Richard Heriford, explains, “We chose to partner with Andrea Cochran because we like the architectural sensibility of her landscape work. The Cochran group has the Zen-like quality of her landscapes. We set out to design a modern classic and I think that’s what we have. It’s furniture for protected public spaces that is so elegant, you might want to take it home.”

Cochran includes a lounge, side chair with arms and low table that give the term “casual elegance” fresh meaning. Cochran is a natural for outdoor spaces where cache, comfort, and camaraderie are prized, from the corporate campus to refined hospitality settings. Andrea Cochran explains the spirit behind the design: “This is about how people live today. They would rather sit comfortably in a low chair or lounge with their phone or laptop than at a high table. In that spirit we designed the chair to be wider than typical, so it feels generous and a little expansive.”

The Cochran elements have subtly sculpted cast aluminum frames that support engineered mesh fabric seats and Landscape Forms proprietary Meldstone™ tabletops. Kirt Martin, Landscape Forms Vice President of Design and Marketing, explains, “The design is very clean, modern and, like Andrea’s landscape architecture, it is timeless. The Cochran pieces are stripped of any unnecessary noise. This is design that allows you to get comfortable and simply experience being outdoors.”

Cochran is engineered to meet the demands of today’s active commercial environments. The lounge and chair’s strong continuous-loop cast frame supports a cast aluminum rail that stretches and holds the mesh seating fabric and is secured to the frame with discreet connections. The replaceable fabric is Phifertex® Plus, a nylon weave that has strength, color, stain and mildew resistance, and UV protection. A ¼” reveal between the structural frame and fabric rail is repeated on the table between frame and top – giving all pieces a “floating” quality. The complementary 24” Cochran table with legs and polished MeldStone™ ultra high-performance cast concrete tops can be used singly or grouped effectively to create sociable settings. Cochran group elements are manufactured using sustainable materials and processes. Aluminum frames contain 100% recycled material and are fully recyclable. Cast concrete is a natural material. Aluminum parts in the standard color palette are finished with Landscape Forms proprietary Pangard II ® HAPS, VOC, lead-free polyester powdercoat. Phifertex® Plus is GREENGUARD Gold Certified.

About Andrea Cochran

Andrea Cochran, FASLA, is founder and principal of Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture, based in San Francisco. The firm, which has earned wide acclaim for its public, commercial and residential work, is recipient of numerous awards including the 2014 ASLA Design Medal, the 2104 National Design Award in Landscape Architecture from the Smithsonian’s Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, and multiple regional and national ASLA awards. The work of Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture sculpts and navigates space through a seamless integration of landscape, art and architecture. The work draws boundaries with a controlled palette of materials, creating permeable edges that blur the line between the natural and built environment. Spare geometry applied to vibrant plant life results in sharp compositional order. This exercise in restraint heightens a sense of the elements—texture, light and movement.

About Landscape Forms

Landscape Forms is the industry leader in integrated collections of high-design site furniture and advanced LED lighting. Since its founding in 1969 Landscape Forms has earned a reputation for excellent design, high quality products and exceptional service. The Landscape Forms U.S. headquarters and manufacturing facility is located in Kalamazoo, Michigan with sales representatives throughout North America, South America, the United Kingdom, Australia, the United Arab Emirates and Asia. Landscape Forms collaborates with renowned industrial designers and consultancies, landscape architects, and architects to design and develop integrated collections of products that address emerging needs and help create a sense of place. Additionally, the company has formed global marketing partnerships with select companies that share its commitment to design. Landscape Forms has an installed base of products around the world. Clients include municipalities, transit centers, corporate, college and health care campuses; and familiar brand leaders such as Boeing, Cisco Systems, Disney, Sprint, American Airlines, Herman Miller and Nike. The company was recently named by the Wall Street Journal as one of the Top 15 Small Workplaces in the US.

Company: Landscape Forms Inc.

Source: http://www.landscapeforms.com/en-US/products/Pages/Cochran-Group.aspx

Tags: Design | Furniture | Landscape Design

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Green Building Tips: How To Create Eco-Friendly Landscaping

Green Building Tips: How To Create Eco-Friendly Landscaping

Eco-friendly landscaping is all about durability, innovation and design. As a result you score a more functional, low-maintenance space and help save the planet.

The popularity of going green is only getting stronger, but the planet hasn’t taken a sigh of relief just yet. We still have a long way to go to turn around the damage we have already caused using more traditional building processes.

Traditional building and landscaping plans rely on carelessly slapping together a bunch of different materials that may or may not work well together. The end result may look good, but isn’t guaranteed to last, and may harm local communities and wildlife habitats around the world.

On the other hand, eco-friendly landscaping and building methods are meant to last year after year, reduce strain on local and global habitats, as well as be low maintenance and efficient in regards to resources, such as energy and water. This sort of project requires more thought and innovation, but the results are sure to pay you back.

Here are 7 green building tips to create more eco-friendly landscaping.

Purchase Long Lasting Landscaping Materials & Site Furnishings

If you install light posts made of metal that rust within a year, you now have to replace materials you just bought. This creates a surplus of waste and additional manufacturing pollution. Save you and the planet from the hassle by sourcing products meant to last years out in the elements.

There’s nothing on the market capable of enduring everything the world throws its way like TerraCast Products. We build the toughest resin-based material in the world—no, really. We’ve literally thrown our planters from rooftops and seen them hit by cars, and they still don’t break! We are so confident in the durability of our product we even offer a 10-year limited warranty.

We strive to use green manufacturing processes in every way possible in order to create a cleaner product with less negative impact on the environment. TerraCast Products produces a 100% Post Consumer Recycled black planter, and all of the other colored Terracast Planters are recyclable once no longer in use.

For all these reasons and more, we remain the leading choice amongst green-conscious architects, cities, residential developers and more.

Build A Green Living Roof

Green roofs are not just for hippies or people living in Germany anymore. In fact, green roofs are becoming increasingly popular in the US. In order to create a green roof, you must first check with a building engineer to ensure your roof is capable of supporting the weight of a living roof. If it is, the roof will be covered in a waterproofing layer before soil and plants are added directly on top.

There are different types of living roofs, some take up a small space and others take up the entire stretch of the roof. An all sod roof could last as long as 900-years! Not to mention, living roofs help regulate indoor temperature for decreased energy usage. You could also use your living roof to capture rainwater in large barrels. This water can then be used on landscaping to reduce waste and your water bill.

Preserve Local Trees

If you are building around native trees it’s important to leave as many in place as possible. Just don’t forget to leave room for the roots as well. Not only do native trees add free beauty, privacy and shade to your property, but also they are good for your health. To prevent damaging extensive root systems, put up portable fencing around tree borders prior to construction, careful to give enough room for outstretched root systems.

Use Native Plants For Landscaping

Native plants are the perfect way to reduce overall maintenance and plant failure rates. Native plants are meant to grow in your area, meaning they are low maintenance and capable of withstanding pretty much anything the weather throws their way. Hardy rules supreme when you are covering a vast or small amount of space; which is why there is no better option than native plants.

Plant Appropriately

Even native plants will fail to thrive if placed in an inadequate location to their needs. If a plant needs 70% sunshine throughout the day, you don’t want to put it in an area that is shaded 80% of the day. This will end in a lot of dead foliage you have to clean up and replant. There’s a plant suited to every environment, just make sure to do the research up front and plant appropriately.

Get LEED Approved

If you go above and beyond sourcing eco-friendly options for your landscaping and/or building project, you have the option to apply for LEED Certification. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design. In order to meet LEED requirements, a third-party is assigned to evaluate practices and materials to determine if requirements for sustainable practices are met or not.

LEED Certification is based on a point system. The smaller the disturbance to the land, the more points you receive towards your project. Every last detail is important when applying for this type of accreditation, including the way a building faces on the lot and the type of trees you plant or uproot.

The goal of LEED Certification is to reward those that create landscaping that plays well with its natural surroundings and has a minimum impact on the environment. Projects must be focused on durability and low-maintenance, as well as creating something hardy enough to withstand even the worst weather in the area. Learn More Here: www.usgbc.org

Go With TerraCast Products

TerraCast Products is leading the way with our one-of-a-kind eco-friendly site furnishings including planters, benches, light posts, receptacles and more. When you buy something from us, you know it’s going to last a really long time. As a result, the environmental footprint of your project decreases—and for that, the whole world thanks you!

Learn more about going green with TerraCast here: Go Green With Resin.

Company: TerraCast Products LLC

Source: http://www.terracastproducts.com/green-building-tips-how-to-create-eco-friendly-landscaping/

Tags: Landscape Design | LEED Certification

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Lakeside Planter

Lakeside Planter

The Lakeside planter is the newest addition to the popular line of site elements designed by award-winning architect, Margaret McCurry.

The planter has a simple steel cylinder shell, 36” in diameter and 23” high, and a robust roto-molded liner. Designed to compliment Lakeside benches and litters, the steel shell features decorative grass or leaf patterns incised by state-of-the-art plasma-cutting technology. Special patterns can be created for signature applications. Bold colored liners in sky blue, grass green, daisy yellow, or in black, are visible through the cut patterns and in the 3” reveal at the base, lending the planter a lively presence. The Lakeside planter is finished with Landscape Forms proprietary Pangard II™ polyester powdercoat in the full Landscape Forms color palette. The liner is molded LMDP (liner medium density polyethylene) and is 100% recyclable.

Company: Landscape Forms Inc.

Source: http://www.landscapeforms.com/en-US/product/Pages/Lakeside-Planter.aspx

Tags: Exterior Design | Landscape Design

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Maglin has collaborated with Philips Lumec to offer a design-integrated line of sustainable site furniture

Maglin has collaborated with Philips Lumec to offer a design-integrated line of sustainable site furniture

Maglin has collaborated with Philips Lumec to offer a design-integrated line of sustainable site furniture. The new of site furnishings blends seamlessly with SoleCity high performance LED outdoor lighting to create a unique look for any urban space.

Benches

SC Series Benches from Maglin are built with recycled aluminum castings and extrusions. Customize your installation with seating options built with High Density Paper Composite (HDPC) or Ipe hardwood.

Bike Racks

SC Series Bike Racks are constructed with recycled aluminum castings. Maglin aluminum casting components contain 95% recycled content (57% post consumer, 38% post industrial). Two different base types offer adaptable installation options.

Bollards

Crafted with recycled aluminum castings and extrusions, SC Series Bollards are available with four base types for adaptable installation. Decorative insert options include, powder coated aluminum, Ipe hardwood or stainless steel.

Waste/Recycle Units

The SC Series Waste/Recycle Unit support is made from recycled cast aluminum and the durable metal frame is topped with a molded plastic lid. Multiple configurations accommodate many recycling programs.

Company: Maglin Site Furniture

Source: http://www.maglin.com/scseries.html

Tags: Landscape Design | Lighting

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Safety Bollards Protect Storefronts

Safety Bollards Protect Storefronts

A vehicle can be many things—a means to get from one place to another, a status symbol, a collector item. A deadly weapon, however, isn't the first thing that comes to mind. But, when you look at how much mass a vehicle has, and its ability to accelerate and travel at high speeds, the consequences of even the smallest driver error can be disastrous. In this post, we'll look at how things like better parking lot design and safety bollard installations can prevent the ongoing damage and injury taking place across North America.

Storefront crashes in Canada and the United States

This is a safety issue not unlike fire sprinklers were a hundred years ago

According to Rob Reiter, Storefront Safety Expert and co-founder of the Storefront Safety Council, vehicles crash into commercial buildings as many as 20,000 times per year, or about 60 times per day, causing approximately 4,000 serious injuries and 500 deaths per year. For convenience stores alone, there are 20 crashes per day. "7-Eleven, as a chain, with their 7,000 or so stores, gets hit 1.3 times per day, nationally," says Reiter.

Reiter's findings come from years of compiling crash data, but as he looks solely at commercial buildings, they cover only a portion of the bigger picture. "When I say there are more than 20,000 accidents per year in the US and Canada for what we call 'storefront crashes,' there are way more than double that in terms of crashing into apartments and houses." This has to do with the fact that there are far more residential buildings than commercial. Almost all vehicle trips start and stop at someone's home—and not all trips involve going to the store. "People get drunk and drive home way more often than they do to stores," says Reiter.

"The term 'storefront crash' has the advantage of being descriptive and the disadvantage of not taking into account lots of other kinds of crashes—such as those involving bus stops and office buildings," says Reiter. "As a label, it has its good points and its bad points. It conveys to people the notion that there are areas where people live, work, eat and play that are incredibly vulnerable."

Pedal error

Reiter has an extensive background in high-security applications involving vehicle intrusions. His work spans a range of projects that include embassies, military facilities, high-value civilian buildings, power plants, government buildings and streetscapes. While much of his work has involved protecting buildings from intentional threats, he found that unintentional threats are far more common.

Why do vehicles unintentionally collide with buildings? Reiter attributes these accidents in part to pedal error and/or distracted driving.

What is pedal error? Typically, this can involve one of two things. 1) A driver, when easing into a parking spot hits the accelerator instead of the brake, causing the vehicle to rush through the parking stall. 2) A driver, when preparing to leave the stall, puts the vehicle in the wrong gear (forward instead of reverse, or vice versa depending on the vehicle's orientation). If the vehicle's tires are against a curb, the vehicle won't move when the driver hits the gas, causing the driver to push the pedal further until the vehicle jumps the curb and slams into whatever lies beyond.

Parking lot design can also have a huge impact on site safety. For pedal error incidents, nose-in parking along buildings or storefronts can be problematic. In the event of driver error, a vehicle will plow into whatever the stall is pointed at—whether it be an exposed patio, glassed dining room, retail area or office space.

"Most of the big-box stores, your Costcos and Walmarts, have designed away nose-in parking for quite some time. It's generally smaller stores, convenience stores and strip malls, that still embrace this design," says Reiter.

Drive aisles can be another big issue when they point directly at store entrances, many of which feature wheelchair ramps. "There is a danger that drivers proceeding down drive aisles while looking for a parking place might lose control of their vehicle for whatever reason, and they just keep going right up the ramp," says Reiter. "It seems like it shouldn't happen as much, but it happens a lot."

Safety bollards and storefront protection

"To me, whether the accident happens because the driver hit the gas instead of the brake, put it in drive instead of reverse, was drunk, spilled hot coffee in their lap, or was busy watching TV in their car, accidents where vehicles crash into stores are in fact foreseeable," says Reiter.

Even the most careful drivers can be susceptible to error. The most rigorous driving regulations won't prevent this. What is more key is to recognize potential hazards before they occur, and finding design solutions to reduce or mitigate the risk that they create.

Safety bollards are key to preventing damage and injury. Safety bollards are made from extremely strong steel embedded deep in ground and reinforced with concrete. They are designed to withstand high-impacts from vehicles, essentially creating a safety buffer between vehicle areas and the area beyond. When you consider that the "area beyond" can contain anything from expensive merchandise or machinery to a family of innocent bystanders, the protection is well worth the cost.

"As someone once explained to me, if you're going to spend a million and a half dollars building a building and another million and a half putting in all the inventory, $10,000 worth of bollards is not even a rounding error."

Why the lack of protection?

Vehicles crash into commercial buildings as many as 20,000 times per year, or about 60 times per day, causing approximately 4,000 serious injuries and 500 deaths per year

Reiter is currently working to release vehicle-into-building data for 2015, which he'll compare with the last few years to identify trends. From what Reiter has seen in previous years, though, the incidents and the resulting damage to people and buildings have been increasing. Despite the constant risk and the many expensive legal settlements, there are still many properties that don't implement effective safety measures.

"There are people and businesses that have put bollards in front of their stores for generations. And there are people who will only do it when there's a local code that requires them to. And that's not going to really change until the local codes catch up," says Reiter.

"This is a safety issue not unlike fire sprinklers were a hundred years ago. Or like ADA 30 years ago. Everybody is still trying to find their way."

When you consider all of the design elements engineered to protect people in cars, it makes sense to ensure similar protections for people outside them as well. "Cars are way safer," says Reiter "You're in a steel box. You have crumple zones, you have air bags, you have seatbelts, you have shoulder belts, you have energy-absorbing steering columns, you have so many things in a car that's been built in and designed to protect the driver. But a person sitting at a table in Burger King, when a car comes in, they have nothing to protect them."

Reiter has seen success working with local codes, but general education and awareness make up a large part of his work with the Storefront Safety Council. In 2016, the Council will begin the Storefront Safety Initiative, aimed specifically at teaching property owners, local governments and insurance companies about safety bollards and other barriers—how to plan, specify and order them. "It's an attempt to help people understand that the solution is there," says Reiter. "Hopefully local governments and state governments will use the information provided as they undertake their own local safety ordinances."

Reliance Foundry Co. Ltd. delivers the highest-quality stock and custom-designed products for architectural site furnishings, traffic management and industrial applications. Since 1925, Reliance Foundry has built upon a long tradition of metal casting expertise to become an award-winning supplier for high-profile and everyday needs across North America.

Company: Reliance Foundry Co. Ltd.

Of: Bryce Tarling

Source: http://www.reliance-foundry.com/blog/safety-bollards

Tags: Exterior Design | Landscape Design | Safety

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Importance Of Outdoor Garden Planter Materials

Importance Of Outdoor Garden Planter Materials

Did you know that the materials your garden planters are made out of impact the success of your plants? It’s true! People tend to focus on the plants as opposed to the planter, but you don’t have to make the same mistake. Planter materials are hugely important and will make a difference in the outcome of your plants. Planter materials include wood, resin, plastic, terra-cotta and more. Here’s an overview of some of the more common types of garden planter materials on the market, including pros and cons of each.

TerraCast Resin Commercial and Residential Planters

You aren’t going to find our specially formulated planter anywhere else other than TerraCast Products. TerraCast planters are the highest quality on the market thanks to our innovative process and uniquely curated materials. Our planters are truly made to withstand the elements, and surprisingly most planters on the market are not.

Pros:

  • Non-porous, meaning our planters are far less susceptible to things like cracking and even stains from graffiti.
  • Resistant to a great deal of wear and tear thanks to a tough exterior. Our planters can withstand high heat and extreme cold.
  • UV-inhibitors are baked right into the resin, greatly reducing the amount of fading and color deterioration planters undergo even when placed in direct sunlight. This keeps planters looking like new for longer.
  • Despite how durable our planters are they are incredibly lightweight, making it easier to move them around as need be.
  • A long lasting planter equals happier plants that don’t have to go through the traumatic experience of repotting more often than necessary.
  • We also offer an additional attachment piece that transforms any one of our planters into a self-watering planter. Depending on the type plants you have and your local climate, you may want to consider this option.
  • All of our planters are approved for use on LEED certified products thanks to the fact they are recyclable, made from recycled materials, and manufactured with an eye on the environment.
  • They can be customized to look any way you want including a wide variety of colors, shapes, sizes, and even personalized logos or graphics.

Cons:

We might be a bit partial, but there are truly little to no cons to our planters. Sure, they might cost more than the plastic planters at your local hardware store, but they are going to last so much longer that they virtually pay for themselves.

Terra-Cotta Planters

Terra-cotta planters are very popular and are pretty much what you picture when you think of the word ‘garden planter.’

Pros:

  • They are good looking planters.
  •  They are affordable and can be purchased at many stores.
  • They can be personalized to fit a wide range of styles.

Yet… the low-end price is there for several reasons. 

Cons:

  • Terra-cotta is relatively heavy, making it difficult to move large planters once they are full of moist soil and foliage.
  • Perhaps the biggest drawback is how easily they break. All it takes is one tumble and the pot is likely to crack and split down the center.
  • Most types of terra-cotta can not withstand freezing cold temperatures and will need to be moved indoors during the winter.
  • Terra-cotta is a porous material, meaning it will lose water faster, thus causing the need to water plants more frequently. Due to being porous it will also absorb stains faster and easier than non-porous materials.

TerraCast planters can be made to imitate the classically cool look of terra-cotta, but without all of the major drawbacks.

Plastic Planters

Traditional plastic planters are available everywhere you look because they are cheap to manufacture.

Pros:

  • Cheap and available at many locations
  • Available in a wide range of colors, styles and sizes.

Cons:

  • Traditional plastic planters are made from the cheapest plastic materials around, meaning they will easily become brittle and break.
  • Won’t last a long time.
  • Can’t withstand extreme temperatures.

TerraCast planters are made from a type of plastic, but not the same cheap plastic you will find mass marketed.

Wood Planters

Wood is a unique planter choice gaining more popularity in recent years as people go for a more rustic look. Considering wood and water make a bad pair, it’s an interesting choice for a planter, but wood planters can be made using rot-resistant treated hardwood to help keep out water damage. 

Pros:

  • Provide a nice, rustic look.
  • Plenty of options in terms of size and shape of wood planters.
  • Can withstand freezing temperatures.

Cons:

  • Not all wood planters are made to proper specifications, meaning they may be susceptible to rot rather quickly as they are constantly exposed to moisture.
  • Wood planters are one of the heavier options, meaning moving them around isn’t an easy task.

Metal Planters

Metal planters offer a contemporary look that’s becoming increasingly popular.

Pros:

  • You can find metal containers just about anywhere, from the store to the junkyard. 
  • Cheap and easy for DIY planters.
  • They provide a unique style statement.

Cons:

  • While metal containers border being indestructible, they could destruct your plants. Since metallic surfaces naturally absorb more heat, this causes soil to dry out faster and plant roots to overheat.
  • Some fertilizer salts are known to corrode the finish off of certain metal types.

Glazed Ceramic Planters

Glazed ceramic planters are basically terra-cotta planters with a coat of shiny gloss on top.

Pros:

  • Thanks to this top layer of sheen, they are pretty planters.
  • The top coating generally makes them non-porous, which is one thing they do have over terra-cotta.
  • Can withstand freezing temperatures if they are coated inside and outside, but many are not.

Cons:

  • Tend to be pricier than other planters thanks to their glossy topcoat.
  • They break easily if dropped or tipped over.
  • If the interior of the pot is not coated it will not withstand freezing temperatures.

The Best Planters On The Market

There’s one common thread connecting almost all planter materials… and that’s the fact that they all come with plenty of drawbacks. That’s where TerraCast Products stand out amongst the competition; our planters don’t come with a laundry list of drawbacks. Instead, we created a quality planter truly made to withstand everything garden planters are routinely exposed to. Plus, our planters can be made to imitate the look of any material from terra-cotta to stone. Check out our huge selection of planters here: http://www.terracastproducts.com/product-category/planter/

Company: TerraCast Products LLC

Source: http://www.terracastproducts.com/importance-of-outdoor-garden-planter-materials/

Tags: Landscape Design

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Designing Outdoor Public Spaces is Vital to the Future of our Cities (December 28, 2015), 10 Major Benefits To Installing LED Tree Ring Lighting (December 9, 2015), Reeder Illuminated Sign (November 23, 2015), Stop unauthorized parking using Reliance Foundry’s Fold-Down Bollards (November 16, 2015), Please be Seated: New York City expands its CityBench program and grows ‘Street Seat’ parklets in Brooklyn (October 23, 2015), Flexible Bollards: Traffic & Parking Lot Posts (September 9, 2015), MultipliCITY wins a 2015 IDEA Goldaward (August 25, 2015), Plastic Bollard Covers: Security Post Sleeves (August 7, 2015), Benefits of Precast Concrete Bollards (July 10, 2015), The FGP Collection by Francisco Gomez Paz (July 6, 2015), How To Create The Best Large Flower Pots On The Block (June 22, 2015), Introducing a whole new personalized approach to site furnishing... (June 15, 2015), Must watch video! Landscape design and the history of ASLA-NY (May 22, 2015)