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Curbed Outside: Touring Alexis Rochas' SYNTHe Rooftop Garden

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We helped throw/took part in Saturday's de LaB/For Your Art event at The Flat apartments downtown, an afternoon that traded in Red Bull and party cups for urban agriculture and an architecture talk with Alexis Rochas. The SCI-arc professor and architect took attendees on a tour of the rooftop garden, SYNTHe, which grows vegetables (such as zucchini, cabbage, and peppers) and herbs (such as sage and lavender) used in the downstairs restaurant, Blue Velvet. The garden, which Rochas designed in collaboration with the Los Angeles Community Garden Council, is built over the building's water and heating systems and is constructed from galvanized metal panels; no two of the panels are alike and the whole project is hand-installed. And as fellow attendee Ritz Bites explains, Rochas used "soil contain[ing] different densities so that the structure can efficiently support the weight of the plants while most efficiently using water and other resources." Currently, the 95% edible garden is watered the old-fashioned way i.e. with hoses as the team awaits funding for an eventual irrigation system.
· Design East of La Brea [Official Site]
· Less Red Bull, More Rhubarb: The Flat Grows A Garden [Curbed LA]
· Adventures in urban architectural agriculture and stupid bodily injuries [Ritz Bites]