Excursion, Spring '17


Doctors monument Public park

The name of the park comes from the monument which is placed in the centre of the park. On the monument,the names of 531 Russian doctors and nurses who died in the Russo- Turkish war in 1877– 1878. The design for the garden in 1889 was produced by the then Regional Gardener Daniel Neff, a Swiss. He attempted to lay out a park in the spirit of English and Chinese landscaping. It was divided into small symmetrical areas, whose alleys converged on the monument. This plan has not changed significantly since then. The Doctors’ Garden may be small, but the locals love it. When the weather is nice, the park is filled with people and especially children who are playing on of the many playgrounds.



Technopolis Hypermarket

On top of the Technopolis Hypermarket, different rooftop gardens have been installed. The first and biggest gardens consists of a large open space with a terrace and hedges along the side of the building. In the beginning the hedges functioned as a wall to ensure privacy but the owners did not like this. A part of the hedges were removed, giving the terrace a more open feel to it while still providing enough privacy. There are several smaller gardens of which the main goal is to provide a nice view for the surrounding office. In these gardens, hedges and even small trees were installed giving shade to the offices and providing privacy. Throughout all the gardens, there have been difficulties maintaining the plants since the Bulgarian climate can be very extreme so from time to time, some plants have to be replaced.


Private garden

Private gardenThe private garden is located outside the city centre, on one of the hills surrounding Sofia. The garden was constructed about 5 years ago and cost around €15 000. The construction and especially the maintenance of this garden has been done with an eye for detail and a perfect layout, considering the difficult terrain the designers had to work with. Since the house and garden are located on a steep hill, stairs were installed at different levels in the garden to ensure an easy passage. The area is divided into different parts. The main garden is the part located directly behind the house. A terrace at the same height of the house was installed giving the owners a beautiful view across the mountains. The garden itself lies on a lower level and was kept very open since the surface is not that large. In the corner an outside kitchen was built providing the perfect space for family meals. The second part of the garden is meant for the children to play in.



Office building Expo 2000

This office building has installed many types of gardens around the site. The first feature that catches the eye is the green wall that is installed at the entrance of the buildings. The entire wall is covered in plants which was made possible through a system of cables that are attached to the wall. A second main feature are the two vertical walls inside the building. These consist of different types of ferns, grasses , … The vertical walls really emphasize the height of the entrance hall and they do an excellent job on bringing the outside inside. On top of the building, a rooftop garden was installed. In the middle, a big terrace was constructed , giving the employees space to relax. The area around the terrace has been filled with an assortment of climbing plants which cover the floors and the fencing around the terrace. An irrigation system was installed to protect the plants for the extreme Bulgarian Weather. In the middle of all the, another garden can be found. The designers opted for plants that grow closely to the ground to make sure that the views from the offices are not blocked. The airshaft in the garden, which is normally a quite disturbing factor, has been covered in climbing plants making it a nice vertical feature.


Capital Fort office building

Capital Fort is the first skyscraper in Bulgaria and with its 28 floors, it is also is the tallest building in Sofia. The building was designed by the same architects that designed the Burj Al Arab in Dubai which is why they share some of the external looks. The entire building is surrounded by plants and shrubs. Combined with terraces and benches, the outside space has been turned into a relaxing space for the employees. The spectacular public spaces within the building are key elements of the project. Everywhere you look, plants are visible. The escalators in the middle of the entrance are completely surrounded by a structure that includes plants and integrated seating. In the different restaurants, green is a key aspect. It can be found on partitions, on tables, … Above the ground floor, a mezzanine was created. The focal point of this area is the large olive tree placed at the balcony and overlooking the ground floor. In this space, many benches were installed. Combined with the water features, this space is the ideal location to enjoy a quiet moment.


South Park

With its 2 km length, South Park is one of the largest parks in Sofia and it is a part of the green belt around the city. The park connects the city centre with the Vitosha mountain which is located outside of Sofia. Before the renovation of the park, the area was very brown and unattractive but it has been turned into a very vibrant and enjoyable space. The park has become a place for everyone to enjoy. There are dog parks, playgrounds, ice cream trucks, bouncy houses, …. You can find 9 ponds within the park. The ponds make use of existing water sources and are all built in such a way that they look natural. The park is divided in 2 by a river running through. The main colour focus in South Park is white and this can be seen in the benches, seats, bridges, fences, …



Trade center Europe

Trade Center Europe (TCE) is a well-established business location, which offers offices, warehouses and shops for rent. The buildings in the complex were constructed over different periods of time and were built using the most environmentally friendly materials available at the time. Green recreation areas were created to bring comfort and harmony to busy working days. Especially on the front of the complex, many green areas can be spotted. One of the main features is the water element in front of the building which contains of 3 glass cylinders filled with water. Around the parking area, many shrubs were planted, not only to create a more welcoming space but also to block the noise from the street next to the buildings. The architects tried to integrate as much green as possible which can be noticed under the bridge. They decided to use that space for parking but instead of leaving it as it was, they covered the pillars of the bridge with plants and also made flowerbeds provided with an irrigation system since they are cut off by rain by the overhanging bridge.




This year, the ELCA - European Landscape Contractors Association has chosen Italy as the venue for its Annual Meeting. Every year, in fact, this prestigious international event, that turns the spotlight on very important issues related to environment, landscape, and green economy, is hosted by a different Member State. From October 4 to 7, 2018 the city of Milan will bring together the most experienced international professionals, managers, entrepreneurs, architects, designers, technicians, consortia of companies, and associations working in the field of green economy and environmental protection. The meeting thus becomes an opportunity to focus on the concepts of “Green City” and sustainability, by exploring how environmental policies could impact on economics, society and environment. This year, the event is organized by ASSO.IMPRE.DI.A. – National Association of Companies for the Environmental Protection, Italian reference body for ELCA.

More information with personal invitation follows.
You can always contact Marie Mertens
ELCA office - contact@elca.info - T. 0032 468 35 11 91