How can we tap into nature to re-design our cities for a better future?
Architects and city planners are tapping into nature and rethinking how and where we live as more and more of our world's population move into densely populated city centres. Cities are now being designed for an environmentally aware generation who aren't just searching for sustainable solutions but also urban sanctuaries that bring a bit of escapism and nature to them.
A new residential and hotel development in Dubai has announced plans to incorporate a man-made rainforest into the design. The rainforest will span 75,000 square feet and is located several metres above the ground level. The first of its kind in the Middle East, it will grow and thrive with the aid of a technologically advanced sensory rain system in what is one of the most arid climates in the world.
If all goes according to plan, anyone wandering through the forest can walk through the automated rain and not get wet. The rainforest provides an entirely new immersive experience for guests and the public to explore and escape from the outside concrete jungle.
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Many of the world’s cities are densely packed, overstuffed and are a maze of concrete and skyscrapers. A recent report by Arup has suggested that as ground-level green spaces get sucked up, shifting parks and plants to the top of buildings and along walls is our best option to minimise pollution and battle global warming. The report goes on to state that green infrastructure not only filters air pollution but moderates extreme temperatures and minimises city noise.
Enter, Marina Bay One in Singapore – a proposed green city concept which features garden covered infrastructure and cascading waterfalls with sky terraces fondly called cloud forests leading up to the mountain top.
Concrete is out and gardens are in. it’s hard to argue that we aren’t more environmentally conscious than ever before when you consider the amount of utopian inspired green city plans there are out there. The implementation of immersive natural spaces within cities isn’t just the responsibility of city planners, it’s motivated by companies as well. Green cities, could and will change how and what we eat and drink, how we use products in our homes and even how we learn about the world around us.