Liam Young, 21 07 08


 

Contemporary cities are no longer just accidental homes for animals that have been displaced from their natural habitat. They can now be seen as hotbeds of evolutionary change, shaping the adaptations of their resident fauna and providing an ideal theatre in which to see behaviour evolving at a pace rarely seen in the wild.

As we begin to view our cities as worthwhile ecosystems this project investigates the possibilities of a symbiotic relationship between two different systems of organization- technology and nature.

Resisting the tabula rasa conventions of current urban tower design the project proposes a parasitic second skin to the existing city. Made from a lightweight mix of peat moss and cement the skin is sprayed around the latent 3 dimensional spaces of its host buildings and streets. Aggregating on existing service cores and structural frames, and additional inflatable bladders, the infrastructure of the city becomes an artificial reef. The porous material functions as a water reservoir encouraging plant life and forming a new habitat for songbirds, bats, inscets and other small animals.

No longer is the natural world something portioned off in national parks and reserves. The inert and polluting city is now an agent in its own rebirth.


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