I came to Boddingtons with 7 years of design/build experience in everything from site construction to greenroofs and a graduate degree in Landscape Architecture. I have always been intrigued with grass paving…
Tell us about yourself, your company, your product.
I came to Boddingtons with 7 years of design/build experience in everything from site construction to greenroofs and a graduate degree in Landscape Architecture. I have always been intrigued with grass paving systems, but found during construction that many of the thinner products I worked with just didn’t live up to their hype. Then, a former classmate of mine opened the Boddingtons’ US office and asked me to help out with detailing and construction documents for our grass reinforcement line. I was blown away by the engineering involved in BodPave®85! This wasn’t the traditional grass paving product I had worked with in the past, but a reinvention of those ideas, designed to really perform and accommodate the design professions focus on sustainable development. BodPave®85 addresses all the shortcomings of traditional pavers by including deeper 2” cells with water holding cups, perforated cell walls for lateral root growth, a deeper (4 – 4.75”) soil profile, an integrated snap-fit system so paver joints are as strong as the center, and a deep (1.35”) integrated ground spike to resist lateral sheer under traffic loading or on slopes. Boddingtons has put all its effort into developing a 100% recycled grass/gravel paving system that performs under our current demands for sustainability while providing the strength and engineering required to support Heavy Goods Vehicles on lush vegetation. It was like a light bulb went on and I started thinking differently about surface infrastructure! ‘We should be designing trafficked surfaces that serve as stormwater catchments, not push it downstream or to another part of the site. Parking structures could cool the air with evapotranspiration, not absorb heat. And we can do this with products that are recycled and recyclable at the end of their lifespan.’ I had stumbled across everything I wanted to do in the design profession bundled up in one product. So, with my unique combination of education and skills, I started telling architects, engineers, and contractors about BodPave®85 and a new way to look at pedestrian and vehicular infrastructure.
What is the role of your materials and products in the development of today’s leading architectural ideas?
Boddingtons Inc. takes a systemic approach in the design of our Grass Reinforcement Solutions. We acquire recycled plastic to incorporate in building design to reduce impervious surface, mitigate stormwater, reestablish a naturalistic water cycle, and use evapotranspiration to reduce Heat Island Effects. How can we do all this with Grass Reinforcement? Here is an example; Boddingtons’ BodPave®85 porous paving grids are manufactured from 100% post-consumer High Density Polyethylene (HDPE). We acquire recycled resins, and apply them in grass paving solutions to help reduce impervious surface and provide structurally sound, aesthetically pleasing trafficked areas. The new multifunctional green space can support vehicular parking, fire truck access, light aircraft, bicycle, pedestrian traffic, or almost anything else you can throw at it. At the end of the installations lifespan (40-60 yrs) the product is completely recyclable for reuse as a new commodity. By using BodPave®85, traditional trends have been reversed; no longer are we filling landfills with construction waste, developing unneeded stormwater, or creating heat sinks. Instead, every parking structure has the opportunity to be a multifunctional green space, and in a country where 30-40% of our downtown is designated for parking, that is a lot of space! Boddingtons Inc. has focused its efforts on creating sustainable solutions for site development to provide architects, engineers, and designers with new alternatives to traditional concrete & asphalt methods. Our goal is to create green infrastructure, both literally and figuratively, and I believe this is right on par with current architectural trends.
What are the latest innovative developments that you are working on and what products do we have to look forward and expect in 2011 and beyond?
Without revealing too much, I can say that Boddingtons is working very hard to make our Grass Reinforcement Solutions product line as complete as possible. Our goal is to provide the highest quality product line with a solution to accommodate any traffic type, design constraint, budget size, or project out there. Every day we have a new request to use our products in a unique way as architects and engineers explore the potential of new design solutions. We strive to create multifunctional green space throughout the world, and if we see a niche that needs to be filled, we are going to make the highest quality product that performs in that capacity.
Explain how your product was used in and contributed to the success of a specific project.
The best example I can think of is the Princess Noura Bint AbdulRahman University in Saudi Arabia. The project calls for a new university for women with a capacity of 40,000 students. It will cover over 85 million square feet and include administration buildings, 13 faculties, a 700 bed student hospital, laboratories, research centers, and a residential area for students and staff. The project is unique in many ways, including their intense focus on creating a sustainable university.
The design called for a porous paving system that could support vegetation and aggregate as needed on drive lanes, parking areas, and pedestrian pathways. BodPave®85 was selected to be used extensively throughout the project for a number of reasons. Its ability to retain moisture in the soil profile in the arid Saudi Arabia climate and encourage vegetation for longer periods than typical systems, were both important factors. Vegetated surfaces will greatly reduce heat absorption and help encourage ambient temperatures on site. In addition, the flexibility and strength of BodPave®85 adjusted to the site as needed by designers, while still providing strength for passenger and heavy goods vehicles. But most importantly, this will be one of the largest projects of its kind in the world and the client wanted the best tried and tested products available, and in terms of grass and gravel paving systems BodPave®85 has no equals.
Have you seen your product most frequently used on a specific building type?
Our Products are being used in a variable spectrum of projects, including everything from small residential work to a road/parking infrastructure project equaling over a quarter million square feet. Globally, Boddingtons will have supplied over 3 ½ million square feet of grass reinforcement in 2010. One of the advantages of BodPave®85 is the versatility in functionality, aesthetic, and cost, allowing it to be used across scales. It provides inherent porosity and stormwater storage capacity, providing hydrologic benefits equivalent to A-type soils with grass cover, this greatly differs from other porous paving systems which are dependent on sub-soils for capacity & infiltration. The flexibility in the aesthetic between the type of vegetation or aggregate used to fill the cells is a benefit to the Architect or designer. BodPave®85 provides a blank slate with inherent structural support, presenting designers with the opportunity to fill the pavers with the material(s) that match their pallet. In almost every project there is a need for access, parking, and movement, Boddingtons offers a solution that combines the necessary functionality and performance needed with the benefits of using greenspace and porous surfaces. BodPave®85 redefines how we view our infrastructure and its functionality, both socially and ecologically. We are just beginning to experience the potential of the green streets vision!