Christopher Hyde Belknap – Architect
Sustainable Design & Development – 1986 to Present
Collaborative Vision Planning and Visionary Sustainable Design Initiatives
International Design Consulting 1996 to Present
Middle East / China Urban Master Planning & Resort Master Planning
International Destination Resort / Mixed Use Architecture / Custom Residential Design
Chairman / Director of Design & Planning – GrowGreen Power Inc.
Developers of Sustainable Energy & Hydroponic Greenhouse Projects Worldwide –
Clean Energy and Fully Climate Controlled Growing Platforms.
Christopher Belknap’s architectural design & consulting practice – Design Earth Synergy is committed to collaborative innovations in Sustainable Design and Development.
His architectural design career spans 30 years, initially based in Colorado attending the University of Colorado School of Environmental Design & Architecture from 1972-1977. He received his Bachelor Degree in Environmental Design in 1975 and a Master of Architecture Degree in 1977. Then he worked for a design build firm, Downing Leach Architects specializing in custom passive and/ or active solar home subdivisions for the next three years in Boulder Colorado. Seeking to expand his horizons and experience in architecture in 1980 he traveled to Honolulu, Hawaii to further his career from 1980-96. Currently licensed in Hawaii Mr. Belknap has had a wide range of design experience, first working in various Honolulu based firms, particularly WATG Architects on Destination Resort Hotel projects throughout the Pacific Rim and then moving on to Design Consulting & Architectural Illustration in 1985.
Note: A complete overview of International Design Consulting Projects can be found in the pull down Menu Titled – INTERNATIONAL DESIGN CONSULTING- PROJECTS
The time living in Hawaii from 1986-1996 was truly an expansion of horizons and experience, as Mr. Belknap had the freedom as a Design Consultant to take a path towards visionary exploration of Sustainable Design Planning in collaboratively envisioning developing conceptual designs for Sustainable Eco Villages, Prototype Sustainable Cities Designs. These initiatives each involved some form of Collaborative and/ or Community Vision Planning Process. The series of initiatives were applied to local Hawaii and International arena, while envisioning and committing to a path forward to a Sustainable World Community. The relationships developed in Hawaii offered Mr. Belknap the opportunity to lead in a series of community based vision planning initiatives that lead to the Initiatives presented on this website that reflect Design Earth Synergy’s primary mission of advancing collaborative and visionary solutions for Sustainable Design and Development at a local and Global level. (brief history expanded below)
Note: A complete record of the DES Initiatives in Hawaii 1986-96 can be found under the top pull down Menu Title – GLOBAL SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITY INITIATIVES – HAWAII 1986-96
In 1996 Mr. Belknap move to Southern California and has continued his career in the Newport Beach area from 1996 to the present. The majority of his architectural career has been primarily as a Design Consultant working in collaboration with leading Internationally based Architecture and Master Planning design firms including his long relationship with WATG Architects.
Assignments have usually been in a Lead Design, or Senior Design position, on a wide range of projects including numerous Internationally recognized Destination Resort & Hotels / Commercial, Retail, Office & Residential – Mixed Use Developments / High-rise Office & Condominiums, as well as Custom Residential Projects. Many of these projects, in particular Resort Hotels such as The Venetian Resort – Las Vegas, NV completed in 1999 (Lead Design – consultant to WATG Architects), required extensive research and attention to historic and cultural details from around the World.
In addition to the architectural work mentioned, Mr. Belknap has been committed to forwarding a series of visionary Initiatives to advance the cause of Sustainable Community Living for the 21st Century.
This work began in Hawaii in 1986 with a visionary plan he authored called Hawaii Aloha 2000 that envisioned the Hawaiian Islands as a model of sustainable community development. This thesis, with illustrations and recommendations for achieving an aligned vision from the community, was eventually presented to Governor John Waihee in July 1987 and it led to a major State sponsored collaborative visioning event and redevelopment initiative for Downtown Honolulu’s Harbor and Waterfront.
In the following 10 years, Mr. Belknap coordinated a series of events in Honolulu, with other community leaders and activists interested in advancing the practice of Community Based Vision Planning to achieve alignment towards sustainable design goals.
These events included two International Youth Conferences held at the Hawaii State Capital Building that modeled a Global Vision Planning Center, and demonstrated the central themes and functions of an Earth Situation Room and Community Vision Forums. This event, and the subsequent series of events, built upon the visionary inspiration and leadership of R. Buckminster Fuller – “World Game” / Barbara Marx Hubbard – “The Peace Room & Community Vision Centers” and Tom Van Sant – “Earth Situation Room”. The Hawaii / Soviet Heart to Heart Exchange and International Youth Congress, 1989 & 1991- envisioning “ A World that Works for Everyone” was attend by 11 Youth Ambassadors from the Soviet Union and approximately 300 Youth Ambassadors from the United States.
In 1992, during the Rio Earth Summit, Mr. Belknap again led a team that created a local version of The Earth Summit in Honolulu on June 7th -1992 that was attended by approximately 10,000 people.
Earth Summit Hawaii modeled the functions of an Earth Situation Room, as well as Community Vision Forums, and demonstrated that communities from around the World could collaboratively envision and develop action plans for a sustainable community working at their own local level, while at the same time being connected globally through the emerging World Wide Web (The Internet).
This event was followed by a greatly expanded demonstration of the Earth Situation Room and Community Vision Forums during the 1995- 30th Year Anniversary of Earth Day event in Honolulu.
Earth Day Hawaii drew 20,000 participants, during the course of the day, along with numerous government officials. One of the government officials was Mayor Jeremy Harris who viewed the full presentation and who, in subsequent years, established a Community Vision Center Network on Oahu that replicated the community vision center network structure presented. In 2003, the U.S. Conference of Mayors recognized Mayor Harris and the City of Honolulu with an Outstanding Achievement Award in the 2003 City Livability Awards Program for his leadership and the Community Vision Program his team established.
In 1994, during this same period of time in Hawaii, Mr. Belknap was part of vision team that came together to consider the complexities of a 21st Century Sustainable City Prototype called Pacific Polis.
As a member of the team, Mr. Belknap developed a Master Plan to illustrate the central themes of Pacific Polis. In this same time period Mr. Belknap, along with sustainable engineer – Reinhold Ziegler, also developed a concept for building Self-sustaining Eco-Villages that incorporated, sustainable agriculture throughout the development, including Solar / Wind – Hydroponic Greenhouses and a Community Vision Center that would address the sustainable living needs of small communities in Hawaii and many regions of the Developing World.
In 1998, Mr. Belknap had the opportunity to apply principles and design themes developed in Pacific Polis, through his consulting design services with WATG Architects, to a series of the largest Urban Master Planning efforts in the Middle East.
In The United Arab Emirates – Dubai / Dubai Marina, and in Saudi Arabia / King Abdullah Economic City. The Collaborative Design and Development Teams, that today resolve the complexities of such endeavors, are taking the initial steps in the design of Sustainable Cities and Communities for the 21st Century.
The combined design consulting experience (1984-2010), and the experience gained from the initiatives and coordinated events demonstrated during the time period in Hawaii (1986-1996), have provided the background to support Mr. Belknap’s current thesis, the proposition of The National & Global Community Vision Center Initiative – a creative / communications / consensus building structure to address – The Five Critical Challenges of the 21st Century.
This document describes a Community Vision / Planning & Network Structure – for achieving the necessary broad vision and consensus built alignment in communities around the World, that will address the complexity of Critical Challenges we face at this present time in history. The resulting alignment of vision and collaborative efforts will lead to multiple solutions on a Global scale for a Sustainable Way of Living by the Year 2050.
Since August 2008, Mr. Belknap and his partners Gary Bailey A.I.A. in GrowGeen Power Inc. along with L Huntley & Bradley Nixon partners in GGP-NC, have been engaged in launching a new development company GrowGreen Power Inc. and the first project GGP-NC out 50 miles outside of Charlotte, NC.
The partners of GrowGreen Power bring a unique set of professional skills, experience and commitment to the enterprise of sustainable development. GrowGreen Power represents a paradigm shifting concept that combines large commercial scale / hydropoinic / climate controlled growing environments with renewable energy power production.
GrowGreen Power Inc.
GrowGreen Power, Inc. (GGP) is an Independent Power Producer (IPP) that specializes in the clean-tech sector of renewable energy production and sustainable agricultural development on a global basis. GGP is a developer of commercial scale hydroponic greenhouses integrated with a diversified set of proven renewable energy technologies that incorporate a variety of energy platforms such as biomass, geothermal and/or concentrated solar power (CSP) collectors in a combined heating and power (CHP) configuration. The innovative inter-connection and integration of these technologies with the hydroponic greenhouse creates a unique and abundant source of locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables, and it produces a highly reliable and efficient source of renewable electric energy in a sustainable platform that we call a GrowGreen Power Center (GGP-Center).
Click on illustrations to expand view:
GrowGreen Power Centers represent a cutting-edge shift within the clean-tech industry. GGP is setting a new standard for what is NEXT in sustainable design innovation and development with our CHP technology platform producing both thermal and electric energy, combined with large scale (100 acre) hydroponic greenhouses producing fresh produce (fruits and vegetables) for the local communities that we serve. We intend to be in the on the leading edge of the clean-tech sector with our integrated energy and hydroponic growing process and business development model on the path to a sustainable 21st Century.
GrowGreen Power Centers integrate hydroponic greenhouse growing systems and renewable energy. GGP-Centers combine solar thermal and biomass power to produce approximately 45MW-net of renewable, base load electricity transmitted to the regional grid. Then combined with the CHP-Power Block, each GGP-Center typically will operate a 100-acre fully climate controlled hydroponic greenhouse that produces a wide varieties of hydroponic produce delivered direct to local communities and nearby regional markets. The integration of these systems provides for the significant reuse of residual, and otherwise lost, waste heat from the power plant to be used in the climate control systems to heat and cool the greenhouse. This integration of technologies adds far greater efficiency to the combined GGP-Center platform.
Each GGP- Center brings the local community more than 300 to 500 permanent new jobs, while also boosting the local economy in the areas of construction, manufacturing, transportation, wholesale, retail and food service. This model is a key to bringing a new generation of sustainable and smart-tech industries with high value jobs back to local communities throughout America in what we call Economic Green Zones.
Each GGP-Center is a highly efficient, reliable and sustainable facility with the ability to operate on base-load capacity in most climate zones and locations worldwide. This is accomplished as a result of our innovative integration of technologies that typically consists of a 50-MW (gross output) biomass power plant combined with a concentrating solar thermal array (the solar array size and scope depends on the region where it is located). These two systems of producing thermal energy, when combined, drive steam turbines generating approximately 45-MW (net output) of clean renewable electricity uploaded to the regional grid, enough to power an estimated 30,000 to 40,000 homes on a 24/7 basis.
For more information on GrowGreen Power Inc. go to – http://www.growgreenpower2.com