17 May 2013

Turn the big yellow giant green!

It's big. It's yellow (or orange, depending on your political persuasion). It's not beautiful, but it's there. And the south side catches a LOT of sun. It's Belfast City Hospital, and I have a proposal.

I work here, and it's a lot of fun. It takes a lot of energy to keep the Belfast Trust running. but look at the sides of this building. Those yellow stripes up the sides are purely protective facing units of painted yellow aluminium. They are a waste of architectural space in this day and age.
I propose replacing them, lock, stock & barrel on the sun-facing aspects of the building with an array of solar panels. They would be cheap to install, modular, better looking than the current stripes, and provide a large part of the energy needed by the Belfast Trust.
Most would probably be photovoltaic, but we could try water heating pipes as well as thermal risers (the building is pretty tall!) with turbines at the top - admittedly a bit more of an engineering challenge. But this could all be done without making the building look any more hideous, and as one of the most iconic elements of Belfast's gorgeous skyline, it would send out a strong renewable energy message.

So, Belfast Health & Social Care Trust, please give it some thought.

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