A ‘Living Wall’ At Texas A&M Could Be The Key To Smarter Cities


A collaboration between professors and students at the School of Architecture yielded an eye-catching design with major potential for improving efficiency and sustainability in urban spaces.

Tucked between the three buildings of Texas A&M University’s Langford Architecture Center, a “living wall” has been turning heads, gaining international attention and fueling cutting-edge research since it was installed in 2018.

A previously-bare brick wall is now home to an impressive 10-foot-tall structure housing soil, an irrigation system and a colorful assortment of drought-tolerant plants. Part of what makes this particular living wall stand out is its striking modular design: each plant is held by one of about 300 metal, diamond-shaped planters that can be removed and replaced for easy maintenance.

Recently replanted after the unprecedented freeze that hit Texas in February of 2021, the wall continues to be a popular photo spot as well as a demonstration of what collaboration and smart design can accomplish. The minds behind the wall, associate professor of architecture Ahmed K. Ali and associate professor of landscape architecture Bruce Dvorak, said they’re thrilled to see the beauty that this joint venture between their departments has produced.

“It feels good to see something built that brings life to a space that had no life before,” Dvorak said.

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Image via Texas A&M University