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The Best Laid Schemes....

SOM has established a joint project with Renssalear Polytechnic called the Center for Architecture Science and Ecology (CASE) where students and Skidmore personnel collaborate on the development of advanced designs for more sustainable built environments. An admiral venture, but the November 14 New York Times article on CASE highlights a project that would create structures above a highway and clean the air with plants, a further extension of the attractive, even seductive myth that plants can effectively clean significant volumes of polluted air in reasonably useful time frames. The project would acquire ..."the air rights for an interstate highway in Washington, D.C. Might it be possible, if the highway is decked over, to construct “eco-chimneys” in which plant materials would help purify the exhaust air coming up from the tunnel-like underpass?" the Times article reports.

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