Coava Coffee went green at its new West Side location on Jefferson Street in Portland, Oregon with the installation of a LiveWall® Indoor Living Wall. An organic expression of Coava Coffee’s organic brand, the green wall is living artwork that attracts and engages customers as they enjoy their coffee in the café’s upper level seating area.
“Living walls, also called green walls, are structural systems that cover walls with growing plants. Living walls transform unadorned walls into vertical gardens,” said Dave MacKenzie, president, LiveWall, LLC. “In retail environments, living walls make interior spaces more appealing and relaxing.”
“We are not just selling top-tier specialty coffee. We are offering hospitality, creating a welcoming ambiance, where our customers feel like friends invited to hang out in our cafés. I had seen green walls in larger spaces, and that got me thinking about featuring a green wall as a unique living work of art our customers can experience as they enjoy a great cup of coffee with us.”
Completed in October 2017, the six-foot high vertical garden spans 17 feet along the back wall of the café’s upstairs seating area. In total, the green wall has 52 LiveWall modular planters with inserts that contain the growing medium and plants. Blossoms Floral, a full-service florist and design studio, provided and maintains the plants, a mix of more than 100 Pothos ‘Neon’ and Pothos ‘Silver Cloud’ plants arranged in a distinctive pattern of wide stripes in alternating dark and light green colors.
“Coava Coffee has direct relations with small rural growers, and the green wall suggests and reinforces the direct connection between Coava and the source farms,” said Mark Annen, AIA, NCARB, Annen Architecture and Design, the project architect. “In addition to expressing the Coava brand and creating captivating visual interest, the green wall fulfills an important architectural function.”
Annen explained that the upstairs section of the café has a low ceiling that hides the mechanicals. The space between the ceiling and the concrete floor could feel compressed. The green wall balances the weight of the concrete floor and ceiling, creating a sense of openness.
Don Trotter, owner of Oregon Restaurant Equipment, specializes in restaurant construction and equipment installation and served as the general contractor for the project. He was responsible for the selection and installation of the green wall system. “Price and ease of installation as a turnkey system were key factors in the specification of LiveWall,” he said.
“We trusted Don’s recommendation,” said Annen. “LiveWall looked to be a well-designed system that could be maintained under the demands of a commercial application. The hardware, planter hanging system, and irrigation lines are simple but solid in construction.”
“The living wall meets our expectations and has been well-received by our customers,” said Higgins. “When we look at customer reviews on social media, they include positive comments and photos of the green wall.”
Coava Coffee Roasters
Coava Coffee began in Matt Higgins’ garage in 2008. A veteran barista and roaster, Matt dreamed of starting his own company, where he could roast and prepare coffees that would be exciting for professional baristas and inviting to everyday drinkers. To accomplish this goal, Matt committed to sourcing exceptional “coava” (green coffee) as the bedrock upon which the company was built. Today, Coava Coffee has three locations in Portland and one in San Diego. Visit Coava online at www.coavacoffee.com. Better yet, stop by to visit us. We will tell more about the Coava story and make you a great cup of coffee, which is our greatest joy.