Environmental issues were high on the agenda at this year’s eVolo Skyscraper competition, with many submissions addressing issues like climate change, deforestation and local food production.
Awarded first prize was the Mashambas Skyscraper (pictured above) by Polish architects Pawel Lipiński, Mateusz Frankowski. Their re-usable building moves between the poorest areas in Africa, educating people in agricultural techniques, and acting as a food marketplace, where local small-hold farmers can trade their produce. The concept was designed with the idea in mind that millions of small-scale farmers in Africa are food-insecure and have limited access to markets and services. Such a building could support resilience in the face of climate change.
Circular economy skyscrapers
Second place went to Tianshu Liu, Linshen Xie of the US, whose proposal Vertical Factories in Megacities explores how cities can contribute to a circular economy. This concept envisages futuristic, clean factories, powered by the organic waste produced daily by the city. All waste is dumped at the bottom level of the factory, before being transformed into valuable products including water, fertiliser, heat, and electricity. In time, the factories contribute to the landscape of the city.
An honourable mention went to Heal-Berg, a machine to reverse climate change. This proposal envisaged a scientist from the future reflecting on how we solved climate change by constructing this innovative building. The concept building converts carbon dioxide in the air into to oxygen by zapping it with laser. The by-product carbon is used to develop graphene as a strong and lightweight construction material. The building is designed to channel wind through turbines to generate energy too, and is connected to others around the world using hyperloop technology.
One very simple environmentally friendly submission, Acupuncture of Urban Traffic Structure, also awarded an honourable mention, imagines a skyscraper transport hub for Moscow’s disjointed public transport system, with the aim of reducing air pollution in the city. The skyscraper has mechanical tower parking, linking drivers with current metro and rail networks, as well as a new string-rail system, a cheaper more environmentally friendly type of monorail.
A fourth green honourable mention is the Giant Sequoia skyscraper that aims to ‘coexist with nature’. The skyscraper concept is such that when the centre of the world’s tallest trees begin to rot, the empty trunk is filled with a building could help prolong its life, securing the tree which would otherwise fall . The project aims to educate visitors about the 100 meter high trees, that can live to 2,700 years old.
For the full list of winners of the 2017 competition, you can visit www.evolo.us.