Often managed by a research organization or a foundation, a botanical garden is an outdoor space for collection, cultivation, and display of a wide range of plants species including trees, plants and flowers. Unlike parks that are designed for sports and leisure, it is dedicated to conservation of rare and endangered flora species, which means limited access and stricter requirements to the environment inside. Architects and master planners work together to create botanical gardens of the 21st century. Integrated into the urban structure of the city, they offer a unique experience, where pleasure, beauty and scientific knowledge are closely intertwined.
Month: April 2021
Concrete, steel and glass – solid industrial materials that are most commonly used to build high-rises in the city realm – create an image of skyscrapers as dead lifeless structures opposed to the vibrancy of nature. Joining a trend of ‘vertical garden’ architecture, architects across the globe attempt to shift the paradigm from industrial to natural, introducing lush greenery into otherwise gloomy city towers.
Beneficial effect of showers is hard to overemphasize. A long hot shower is something that helps us prepare for the challenges of a new day in the morning or rinse off the anxieties and unwind before going to bed. Product designers envision shower heads that would enhance our showering experience through improving water quality, suffusing it with essential vitamins and minerals – or simply through making it fun.
Along with apples, bananas are the most popular fruits in the world. More than 100 billion bananas are eaten every year, and that same amount is turned into waste. Depending on environmental factors, discarded banana peels can take up to two years to decompose, which poses a serious environmental problem contributing to greenhouse gas emissions and thus to global climate change. Product designers use different parts of banana plants to create biodegradable and renewable materials that can be further utilized to produce sustainable everyday objects.
Originating from Asian countries, a teahouse, or tearoom, is a building where primarily teas and other light refreshments are served. Informed by the ancient art of the tea ceremony, contemporary tea houses with their pared back minimal architecture and connection to the surrounding environment generate spaces for sharing and reflection.
Digitalization has permeated all spheres of our life. No wonder that 3D printing in architecture has evolved from building concepts models to building entire structures. This approach has proved to be sustainable and saving time and money, but furthermore, it responds to global societal issues such as exponential population increase and a lack of affordable accommodation, offering an eco-friendly and affordable alternative to traditional construction methods.
Made from the same non-biodegradable plastics that is used to build car tires, chewing gum is the second most common form of roadside litter, after cigarette butts. Taking 50 years for one single piece to even begin decomposition, it poses a serious ecological problem. In the meantime, synthetic rubbers bubblegum is composed of, like polyethylene and polyvinyl acetate, can be molded, pressed, and hardened into different shapes, creating a material that is relatively durable and easy to work with. Noticing the wasted potential of chewing gum and the harmful effects it poses on the environment, product designers recycle the confectionary into an array of amazing objects.
Сontrasting with a network of city streets that are often shaded due to their narrow width, plazas bring light and air into the urban landscape. Today, designers and architects adapt the plaza typology to such spaces as the roofs of underground parking garages and urban sites that emerged from the demolition of urban renewal. The result is always the same: a multipurpose spatial volume that serves the community offering the citizens a space for social interaction, significantly enriching the cityscape.
Although in a well-known children’s story a big bad wolf was quite quick to bring down a house made of straw, numerous studies and experiments show that straw buildings can be solid and resistant. This agricultural waste, a leftover remnant from grain production, can boast good thermal, acoustic, and even structural characteristics. Below, we have selected several eye-catching designs that use the characteristics of this renewable sustainable material to the full.
The shift from print to digital demands a rethinking of the library both as an institution and a building typology. To sustain their relevance in the information age, modern libraries must not only provide the spatial programming of traditional library buildings, but also generate alternative spaces and uses to attract new audiences. The featured projects depart from the conventional idea of the library turning traditional spaces into modern cultural hubs.