Turning Billboards Into Giant Planters

Billboards are there to sell you things, but artist Stephen Glassman has another purpose in mind: art. He's aiming to turn billboards in Los Angeles into giant planters filled with bamboo. But first, he has to figure out how to water the thing:

Making the idea work could be tricky. Russell Fortmeyer, an engineer with Arup who has been assisting on the project, said they've even talked of mining moisture from the air to water the bamboo. Then there's the question of how much the installation would weigh — and whether the billboard could support the weight. They want to avoid restructuring of the billboard frame, which could be costly.

David Lara, spokesman for the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety, said his department would need to consult with the city attorney's office before approving a permit for such a project. Sign-offs from fire and planning authorities might also be necessary, Lara said.

Longtime billboard opponent Dennis Hathaway said he would rather see a bamboo garden than advertising. "But I'm not sure how long it would last. At some point that billboard is going to be a McDonald's ad again."

Corina Knoll of the Los Angeles Times has the full story: Link

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