For so long the concrete jungle drew a line between people and nature. But, in recent years, the push to integrate nature with our urban environments has been growing. Increasingly people want a seamless fusion between the city and green spaces. This has driven some visionary designers and architects to mix the two distinct environments in single structures. Blurring the line between indoors and outdoors. Making them one and the same for a future defined by green, sustainable living.
We’ve found three great examples of the future of our cities, so check them out and let us know what you think.
The Living Garden
Designed as part of the 2018 China House Vision Exhibition, the ‘Living Garden’ Pavilion by MAD Architects is a great place to start. This unique design all but removes the boundaries between interior and exterior giving the feel of actually living in nature. The organically curving roof features solar panels from partner Hanergy which will harness enough daily energy for a family of three. Inside the pavilion various seating areas include green islands of trees and grasses to really bring the outside inside. A truly living landscape inside your own home.
Destined for Utrecht in The Netherlands, the vertical forest which is the Hawthorn is stunning to see. Designed by Italian architect Stefano Boeri, the stepped tower design will bring 10,000 plants and trees to the heart of the city. Once in place, the plants covering the façade and balconies of the building are estimated to be able to absorb up to 5.4 tonnes of carbon dioxide whilst providing oxygen in return. This will have a positive impact on the city’s air quality whilst providing the equivalent around a hectare of woods to the city. The 90-meter-high building will open in 2022 and be joined by a second tower designed by the Dutch MVSA studio. Tower II is the vision of Dutch architect Roberto Meyer of MVSA.
Another concept design by the visionaries of MAD Architects; Southbank is the answer to a brief drawn up by developers Beulah International. The brief called for a mixed-use building for the heart of Melbourne, Australia which features a single tower to avoid over-crowding and delivered open sightlines to maximise views. MAD’s response is stunning. With a design which the team described as ‘conceived as a series of small, green foothills that lead pedestrians up to the ‘mountain village’, our scheme links the ground plane to the building’, the finished project is like no other. The whole structure is frequently broken up with lush, green spaces.
A 360-meter-tall skyscraper featuring a glulam façade which resembles a root structure curving towards the sky. At the tower’s peak a cloud-like cantilever will offer restaurants, bars and an observation deck for the hotel.
Whilst these buildings are new and experimental, we expect to see the designers of tomorrow take brave and bold steps in this direction. As the public want and expect to see more green, sustainable designs in their cities, tomorrow’s designers will lead the way in making their dreams a reality.