PNC's Green Wall Takes Root

PNC Bank owns 66 Leed certified buildings--more than anybody else in the world. Now they're adding some new greenery to the City of Pittsburgh.

PNC Bank is building North America's largest green wall in Downtown Pittsburgh. It will replace a layer of granite on one of PNC's existing buildings on Fifth Avenue. The wall will be a six story green mosaic of perennials and evergreens and will feature PNC's logo. Gary Saulson is the director of Corporate Real Estate at PNC. He says the wall will cool the area in the summer and provide insulation for the building in the winter, as well as improve air quality. He explains how a green wall is constructed

"The way to really think of a green wall is to think of planting a plant in a paper cup and then putting the paper cup into a metal holder horizontally. Well if you have a number of metal holders and you fill them all up with paper cups and you have plants growing out of them, all you're going to see is the plants," said Saulson. 

There will be a drip irrigation system from behind the wall to water it. Saulson says the wall will cost about $250,000.

"It will not save us money...I think the payoff is really in being able to make a contribution to the city of Pittsburgh, to our employees, to add greenery," said Saulson. 

Saulson thinks the wall will be an icon for PNC. It's currently being grown in a greenhouse in New York, and should be ready in time for the G20 summit.