living_building
Infographic – click to enlarge -



An update on the garden half a year later can be found here

This is a detailled plan about the “Living building”-Project I was involved in during my time at Jaaga in Bangalore. I recieve updates once in a while about the status and right now people are building the panels for the vertical garden – the fox is out of the hole!

Thanks to Allison, for sending me text and illustrations.

//Here’s the plan//

Jaaga (meaning “space” in Kannada), based in Bangalore, India, seeks to nurture innovative endeavors by providing space, core infrastructure, and a diverse social environment. Born in August 2009 from a desire to bring the arts and technology communities closer together, Jaaga explores new ways of using pallet-rack shelving to create a modular and mobile community space in a dense urban landscape to foster innovation.

The Living Building project seeks to extend the notion of the pallet-rack shelving as the skeleton of the living building by evolving the metaphor and design philosophy to include other organs such as tissue made of living vertical and rooftop gardens and a cascading aquaponic farm, a circulatory system complete with rainwater harvesting and hydroponic drip irrigation, a digestive system that houses worms which generate compost out of our organic waste, a metabolic system responsible for taking the energy harvested from our solar panels to light our space, connect us with wireless internet, and drive the pumps that circulate our harvested water. Eventually the Living Building will even develop a nervous system that senses and communicates. It is the intent that with each iteration of growth the building comes one step closer to reaching full consciousness.


metabolic

SOLAR PANELS Jaaga’s solar panels produce 1-kilowatt of power. This in conjunction to battery and a back-up on the grid electrical connection contributes to the power we use at Jaaga. Metabolic systems are responsible for managing energy and utilizing it within the body of the living system. Currently our metabolic system powers our lighting, wireless internet routing that is the inital stage of our nervous system, and finally charges the pumps that work to circulate our water.


skeletal

PALLET-RACKS The bones of Jaaga are steel shelving components known as pallet racks. Typically they are used in large warehouses enabling the storage of material up to the full height of the building. The components lock together to form the full skeletal structure of Jaaga without the need of additional bolts or connectors. There is no foundation so it can be disassembled and moved.


tissue

ROOFTOP GARDENS Jaaga’s roof will be lined on the front and right side with 16” deep raised-bed gardens. These gardens will primarily grow vegetables and also some hearty verticals for wind-blocking. They are watered by a drip irrigation system that uses harvested rainwater and a solar-powered pump. The structure was made from re-used materials. The seeds are indigenous varieties that were provided by The Green Foundation.

VERTICAL GARDENS Jaaga’s front facade is lined with almost 70 square meters vertical gardens. The system for these gardens is hydroponic, meaning the plants are in a non-soil growing medium and are fed with nutrient rich water via drip irrigation. Our system uses two layers of coir mat backed by a moisture retention mat. Another unique aspect of our system is that many of the panels can swivel open and closed. Each panel is mounted on two ball bearings that allow the building to open, let light in and breathe. It also allows for easy access for maintenance, a unique sitting area and
tissue_2 finally when the panels are completely reversed they show a custom-designed mural by Walker Babington. The inspiration for the design of the garden is that it be bold, unusual and dramatic. It is also influenced by abstract expressionist paintings. All of the plants used are ornamental.The vertical gardens add many benefits to Jaaga such as sound-damping and temperature cooling.
The layers of a vertical garden panel.
- click to enlarge -


AQUAPONICS is the process of gardening in a soilless substrate that is there to both hold the plants and be a bredding ground for nitrifying bacteria. Water from a fish tank is the source of nutrients whereby the fish excrete ammonia and the nitrifying bacteria break down the ammonia into nitrites and nitrates that the plants feed on. As the plants eat they are also cleaning the water that is then returned to the tank, Aquaponics uses about 5% the water of a regular garden, making it quite environmentally sound yet it does require energy to run the pump, in this case our nervous system of solar panels will provide this energy. This fish in our tank are tilapia because they work best in this climate and are a resilient fish that can deal well with slight fluctuations in water pH and temperature.
tissue_5
Barrel plant-bed and Tilapia Fish



digestive



tissue_3


VERMI-COMPOST Jaaga’s stomach consists of a vermiculture worm bin that turns organic waste into compost. These worms, Eudrilus eugeniae variety, eat the organic waste, their manure becomes compost and finally as they multiply the are then fed to the fish in the aquaponic system.



Worm bin made from a blue barrel that is also used for the aquaponics system. – click to enlarge -



circulatory

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RAINWATER HARVESTING The building collects rainwater from several points along the roof and channels them into one 1000 Liter tank. This tank sits above another tank that holds the water for the circulation of the hydroponic system. Periodically, harvested rainwater is transferred to the hydroponic tank and filled with fertilizers for the vertical gardens.

DRIP IRRIGATION Each vertical garden panel contains a gutter and drip irrigation tubing. Water is collecting in the gutter and returned to the hydroponic water tank and then pumped back up throughout the vertical garden via drip irrigation tubing.


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The building of Jaaga with garden drafts – 3d animation

Links:

Other articles about Jaaga
DIY green walls
Vertical Gardens by Patrick Blanc
BarrelPonics pictures
Jaaga Website
Videos about jaaga // City Signals // The Living Building goes green // Jaaga Walkthrough

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  1. [...] RAINWATER HARVESTING The building collects rainwater from several points along the roof and channels them into one 1000 Liter tank. This tank sits above another tank that holds the water for the circulation of the hydroponic system. Periodically, harvested rainwater is transferred to the hydroponic tank and filled with fertilizers for the vertical gardens. THE LIVING BUILDING PROJECT DETAILS | STORIES OF A JOURNEYMAN [...]

  2. Danielle on Freitag 27, 2010

    Touche. Sound arguments. Keep up the amazing spirit.

  3. [...] that are popping up all over the place. I even found a guy who made this his mission project, creating a Living Building in India. My dreams aren’t that big. I just want to make a small terrarium with a few of those cool [...]

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    A Week in Ohio and Kentucky

  5. TobyOActis on Freitag 27, 2010

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