Two Shades of the First

Two Shades of the First

06 July 2017 4557

On July 1, 2017, visitors to EcoFest held near Maryina Gorka, in addition to inspiring demonstration of rolling stock of transport of the future and long-awaited communication with like-minded people, could enjoy the flavor of flowering gardens not only at SkyWay EcoTechnoPark site, but also on the roofs of anchor supports and the guesthouse.

Almost at the same time, one of the Belarusian online resources has released a news saying that just recently the first “green” roof in Belarus had appeared on the roof of the grammar school in Maryina Gorka in the framework of the project from UNDP and the Ministry of Natural Resources.

Like in the old anecdote, the most interesting thing is that it has really appeared in this town, however, not just recently, but in the past year. Moreover, not on the roof of the grammar school, but in SkyWay EcoTechnoPark. As we reported in October 2015, a joint initiative from SkyWay Technologies Co. and the regional public Association “Pukhavichy krai” called “Greening of roofs” (a proposal for which was written by Anatoly Yunitskiy’s Deputy for bio - and agrotechnologies, former Deputy Minister of agriculture and food of the Republic of Belarus, Candidate of Sciences Vasily Pavlovskiy) received a grant from the United Nations Development Program.

SkyWay technology was initially developed by Anatoly Yunitskiy with the aim to raise the quality of man’s life by environmental improvement. Our General designer started to pay special attention to this aspect of string transport 15-20 years ago, when due to the shortage of urban land and challenging ecological situation in the cities there appeared an acute problem of using roofs of buildings, underground and semi-underground garages, overpasses and other manmade structures for the creation of architectural and landscape objects with the use of green spaces and beautification features. In recent years, the expansion of areas for green spaces goes on slower than the growth of urban population. As a result, the provision of public green spaces for urban residents is markedly reduced. According to SkyWay creator’s intention, green roofs should ensure improvement of living standards and man’s health, to make the surrounding hostile urban environment comfortable and close to natural conditions.

Cooperation with the UN

Unfortunately, further cooperation between UNDP and our Company on this project did not come round due to a number of objective reasons, primarily because of extremely strict regulations on the list of organizations, with which we could and should work. In the end, Skyway Technologies Co., having won the grant, subsequently abandoned it and has completed the work in this direction at its own expense. In September last year, we greened the roof of the SkyWay transport and logistics hub combined with the first anchor support, in May this year ― the roof of the guesthouse. Greening of the second anchor support is also completed. Since it happened considerably sooner, in greater volume and, as we assume, for less cost than the UN grant successor, which handled the work, we believe that our decision was correct.

According to the information available with us, the project for greening the roof of the greenhouse at Maryina Gorka grammar school provided for the creation of a green roof with the area of about 100 m2 (the project was funded by the UNDP grant, the ceremonial opening took place on June 27, 2017). At the same time, in 2016-2017 SkyWay Technologies Co. completed a total of 3 projects on greening roofs of residential and industrial buildings with a total area of 236 m2. Besides using the already existing experience, we have a positive result of our own work. In cooperation with the research institutions of the Belarusian National Academy of Sciences, the Company has developed a special composition of soil for roof greening, obtained Technical Specifications and conducted registration of the soil composition in the State Committee for Standardization of the Republic of Belarus (Certificate attached below). This means that we have the right to sell this special soil on the territory of our country.

We have mastered several types of activities in this direction. In addition to greening roofs of residential buildings, Anatoly Yunitskiy has developed the technology for using a soil layer of a few meters thickness at anchor supports instead of concrete to significantly reduce the cost of their construction. Thus, several goals were achieved at the same time. Moreover, our rooftop garden has already wintered proving its viability and the plants even produce fruits in it! Apples are unusually delicious there, and a high official from the UAE, who has recently visited SkyWay EcoTechnoPark, tasted strawberries there and called them the most delicious out of those he had ever eaten in his life. It is also worthy to mention the fact that our scientists have managed to build a reserve of nutrients for plants in the gardens on the roof for a whole century!

Thus, SkyWay Technologies Co. was the first to implement absolutely independently the project of greening roofs in a much shorter time and much more efficiently than all competitors were able, being the exclusive owner of a truly unique technology.

What do we feel reading such news?

However, this is not important. It does not matter who was the first. The fact of germination of “green” ideas’ sprouts in people’s minds is much more important. It is a recognition! The thing that was previously unthinkable, or at least strange, gradually comes into our lives, making it better! It means that, despite all the “inaccuracies” of such publications, we feel a deep satisfaction reading them!

Mikhail Kirichenko