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Photo courtesy of Kingsland Wildflowers
Photo courtesy of Kingsland Wildflowers
Working on the garden.

Known for its industrial flair more than for its gardens, one woman-owned business is making sure it puts the green back in Greenpoint, quite literally.

Owner and founder of Brooklyn-based Alive Structures green roofing company Marni Majorelle, along with her team of environmentalists and New York City Audubon, not only looks to transform spaces as part of her mission but also to improve air and water quality, reduce energy dependence and create open green space.

One of the company’s more recent projects: the rooftop at 520 Kingsland Avenue, a space owned by Broadway Stages, will be transformed into a habitat for plant and wildlife while also serving as a community space.

The vision for the space, as written on the project’s website, was “to utilize existing warehouse infrastructure in Greenpoint to cultivate native grasses and wildflowers to support birds and insects in the neighborhood,” a vision that is certainly coming to life, and then some.

“The Kingsland Wildflower roof will provide a green corridor of native grass and flower habitat for New York City’s bird and insect populations,” Majorelle says.

New York City Audubon, a grassroots community organization and an instrumental partner on the project, according to Kingsland Wildflower Roof Project Coordinator Niki Jackson, plays a large part in helping with the site design, educational programming and the wildlife monitoring that will be happening at the site.

“The project will develop 20,000-plus square feet of green roof planted with native grasses and wildflowers,” said Jackson. “The roof will serve as both a bird/insect/bat habitat as well as a community engagement space for local, environmental sustainability projects in North Brooklyn.”

Beginning on September 24, the 10,000-square-foot roof garden will be open to the public. There, attendees will be able to explore the three roofs that have been planted with a combination of native grasses and wildflowers while enjoying panoramic views of Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens.

The project, funded by the Office of the New York State Attorney General and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation through the Greenpoint Community Environmental Fund, will be fully complete after its second phase of construction, set for the spring of 2017.

The garden’s opening will kick off on the 24th with the Kingsland Wildflower Festival, happening from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The day will feature roof tours, wildlife experts, plant experts, music, food, drinks and activities for children and families.

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