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Philly's Market Street Gets Green Face-lift 

1901 Market Street Lobby Entrance

Philadelphia's 1901 Market Street, corporate headquarters for Independence Blue Cross (IBC), underwent a 5-year complete building modernization, which included the overhaul of the 1987 building's lobby, full-floor cafeteria, all 45 office floors, and the Market Street frontage expansion at the ground floor. This renovation was awarded with two TOBY (The Outstanding Building of the Year) Awards from BOMA Philadelphia (Building Owners and Managers Association). BOMA’s TOBY awards recognize quality in buildings and reward excellence in building management. Buildings are judged on everything from community involvement and site management to environmental and green policies and procedures.

IBC Plaza at 1901 Market Street

Nothing more visually states a company’s green branding than installing two exterior 18’ tall living walls! Aside from the site’s interior renovations, IBC also gave its outdoor plaza space a “green face-lift.” The previous space was segmented and masked, plants had outgrown their space, and the plaza terminated at a tiered concrete wall of weeds that loomed over seating areas.

Existing Plaza Conditions at 1901 Market Street

Now, 1901 Market Street is wide open with welcoming views to lush living walls! New paving, complete with IBC’s inlaid logo medallion and recessed LED lighting, runs throughout and visually connects the buildings overlooking the space. Ample seating and modular parallelogram-shaped wooden benches allow office workers to find respite.

IBC Plaza at 1901 Market Street

But the real wow-factor to the plaza is the green walls! The two green walls span a total of 32 feet and provide a splendid visual contrast to the richly colored Trespa panel accent wall that surrounds it. Serpentine tiered seating extends from the wall and allows visitors to appreciate the living wall plantings up close. Additional plantings below the Trespa panels help soften the transition between materials. The living walls are segmented by recessed LED lighting that aligns with other design elements.

IBC Plaza at 1901 Market Street

Plant Connection provided the client with several living wall planting design options. A curvilinear design of overlapping arcs that freely flows through both walls was ultimately chosen over more grid-like options, which provides a greater contrast to the linear lines of the plaza space.

IBC Plaza Design Concept Rendering

Since the plaza is surrounded by tall buildings that cast shadows and bounce light, a planting palette suitable for shade was chosen with seasonal interest. Various evergreen species like winter creeper, which develops a crimson hue in fall/winter, were incorporated, while chartreuse coral bells and carpets of starry pink phlox offer spring and summer color.

IBC Plaza Planting Design Concept

IBC Plaza Planting Plan

Building occupants now have verdant views to the living walls below, and plaza visitors can take a refreshing break outside in an inviting space. Environments with more natural light, as well as different vistas, colors and patterns, all of which IBC lends, can help nurture creativity, improve moods and enhance the ability to focus. Who wouldn’t want to work in an office environment like that!

IBC Plaza at 1901 Market Street

Projects of the Week

Thank you to for featuring the World Trade Center Liberty Park G-O2® Living Wall AND the Yahoo! Commuting Coop G-O2® Living Wall as recent Project of the Week feature videos.

World Trade Center Liberty Park Living Wall - Project of the Week 1/30/17
World Trade Center Liberty Park Living Wall
Yahoo! Commuting Coop Living Wall - Project of the Week 11/21/16
Yahoo! Commuting Coop Living Wall

PCI Branches Out With Hop Bines

Plant Connection is hoping to branch off into the world of microbrewing, and it would grow its own ingredients!

With microbreweries popping up more and more on Long Island's East End, Plant Connection is looking to open one of their own - Jamesport Farm Brewery. And it is one step ahead of the game since it already grows hops, a main ingredient for beer.

Partners Anthony Caggiano and Melissa Daniels started Jamesport Farm Brewery as a way to provide local craft beer made with ingredients grown on site at their farm. They combined 50+ years of nursery growing experience with their passion for artisan beer to create a unique "Farm to Pint Experience."

Anthony and Melissa plan to convert an old potato barn on their 43-acre farm into a microbrewery with a bar and tasting room. In addition to hops, they will plant barley, another ingredient. 

Melissa and Anthony on News 12

“If we grow it on the farm, it’s fresher. It’s the way we want it, and it’s what the people want,” says Caggiano. “Everybody wants to see something local, locally grown, locally produced. And they’ll come.”

Caggiano and Daniels are still waiting for the final permits from the town of Riverhead so they can be the first microbrewery on a working farm. If approved, they hope to open by this summer.

To learn more visit and find them on Facebook and Instagram. Watch the News 12 video.


Anthony and Melissa are also founding members for Living Architecture New York.

LANY is a group of dedicated citizens advocating and educating for policies, incentives, and direct investment to dramatically accelerate the implementation and maintenance of green walls + green roofs in the New York Metro area. These living architecture technologies support multiple economic, environmental, and human health benefits.

LANY Founding Members are concerned citizens seeking seed funding from Charter Members to create infrastructure to meet our goals of improving and protecting the environment of NYC through the use of Living Architecture Technology. 

LANY needs your help to make a difference in New York! They are looking for Charter Members to help start this important organization. To find some valuable information about the exciting opportunity of becoming a Founding Member of Living Architecture New York, click: Meet Living Architecture New York.

To learn more visit and find them on Facebook and Twitter

GRP Training

Green Roof Professional Training will be in New York this March 16-18! With GRP training, you'll learn how to conduct cost-benefit analyses to make a business case for green roofs, design to achieve multiple performance benefits, integrate green roofs with other building systems for maximum client benefit, and much more. Register today and save $75!

PLUS, meet LANY (with guest speaker Melissa Daniels of PCI) and learn about their advocacy and education for policies, incentives, and direct investment to accelerate the implementation of green walls and roofs in the New York Metro area.

Reserve now - LIMITED SPACE!

Sneak Peek

In our upcoming e-Newsletter, learn about one of our oldest living walls, installed in 2012, and its ongoing success thanks to a dedicated team of professionals! 

About Us
Plant Connection, Inc. is the exclusive global grower and US distributor for the patented G-O2® Living Wall System. With full horticultural support and innovative design, G-O2® products represent the best quality available in the marketplace today.

PCI manufactures, designs, and grows G-O2® Living Walls, which are specially engineered for plant performance and sustainability.

As a modular system, it mounts easily to different surfaces, allowing for multiple applications. Its own built-in pressure compensating irrigation system and state-of-the-art remote monitoring system ensures the viability of your custom plant selection.
About G-O2® Products
As a full service green wall company with a thorough horticultural background, we will consult with you on plant choices for your specific location. Our patented G-O2® Living Walls are successful because:
  • All plant material is specially customized for each project.
  • All products come pre-grown by PCI, which allows you to have a mature and healthy product ready for installation.
  • Complete horticultural support offered from design concept to installation and maintenance with trained horticultural professionals and design specialists.
Design Services
Our team of formally trained landscape designers and horticulturists can assist you in creatively greening interior and exterior spaces and cultivating living artwork.

From site evaluation, through design concept and plant selection, our specialists will consult with you and develop a detailed plan that meets your project requirements.

We can provide concept drawings, custom CAD panel layouts, and final planting plans and will support you throughout the entire design process.

Informational Seminars

PCI also provides informational seminars that illustrate the benefits of green walls and green roofs to Architects, Landscape Architects, Engineers, Designers, Homeowners, Contractors, and Developers.

If you are interested in learning more about implementing our products on your projects, please contact Melissa Daniels for more information.

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Contact Us

Plant Connection, Inc.
5873 Sound Avenue
Riverhead, NY 11901
888.78.PLANT (toll free)
631.722.8111 (local)
631.722.8787 (fax)
Copyright © 2017 Plant Connection, Inc., All rights reserved.
G-O2® Living Walls Patented in Canada and United States of America. US PAT. NO. 8,984,808.
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