2015’s been quite the year for architecture the world over! We’ve seen sexism be broken down, cutting-edge new techniques and designs, and even more integration between the beauty of nature and the incredible structures man can build. Around here, you know we love anything eco-friendly and green, so this trend was of special interest to us. While Canada’s climate makes a lot of these design ideas impossible in Toronto, there are some truly staggering buildings going up around the world bridging the gap between natural and artificial. Check out a few of our faves below:
Dubai’s architecture is truly one-of-a-kind, all about opulence and bells and whistles, so of course a building complete with a rainforest atrium and a beach could only be in the works there. Yes, Rosemount Towers, a 47-storey set of towers including both residences and hotels, will house a five-storey atrium with a miniature rainforest ecosystem inside. Plus, residents and guests can kick back on the tower’s artificial beach – in the middle of the desert. Maybe not so eco-friendly, but this project is too ambitious not to include.
The design for the new face of the Ravel Plaza was actually found through a competition, and it’s no wonder why this multi-dimensional proposal was the winner. Equal parts residence, retail and offices and beautiful greenery, these glassy towers seem to come alive at every corner. Amsterdam is a beautiful mixture of historic buildings and a new generation of architects and styles. This area specifically is changing quickly, and this unique building is a beautiful addition to the city’s changing landscape.
A climate like Malaysia means that hardy trees aren’t the only landscaping option outside. This building uses architectural interest and more delicate plant varieties to create a lush look all over. We love the gently sloping atrium that gives way to a sports field, and the beautiful fringe created by the vines circling the building. Add to that a gorgeous pond and green elements throughout the interior, and you have one community centre we’d love to spend every weekend at.
Of course, Silicon Valley’s warm weather and influx of cash make it a perfect place for a proposal like this one: the world’s largest green roof! If approved, architect Rafael Vinoly would turn an aging shopping center into a mixed-use retail development with a 12-hectare green roof. It would be complete with 3.8 miles of walking trails, natural plant species, a vineyard and orchard, and an amphitheatre! This has to be one of the most incredible proposals we’ve seen in a while, both in size and the complete integration of plant life into the architecture itself. It will be years before the site looks anything like the renders above, but we’ll be waiting to see how this one turns out!
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