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Solar Tree, Ringstraße , Vienna, Austria 
Wednesday 10 Oct 2007
 
A solar sprouting 
 
 
 
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Designed by the international renowned designer Ross Lovegrove 

The SOLAR TREE is a MAK-initiated urban design project in cooperation with ARTEMIDE and SHARP SOLAR. The SOLAR TREE, the extraordinary symbiosis of pioneering design and cutting-edge solar technology had its world premiere at the MAK Design Nite on Monday, October 8, 2007: a prototype of this urban design project, which was developed by Ross Lovegrove at a suggestion of Peter Noever, Director MAK, is presented to the public for the first time in Vienna. Cooperating with ARTEMIDE, the leading Italian specialist for innovation in lighting, and SHARP SOLAR, a high-tech company and the global market leader for solar cells, Ross Lovegrove developed a lighting unit that indicates new perspectives in urban design with consideration to social, cultural, and changing ecological needs. The suggestion for the development of the SOLAR TREE came from Peter Noever, Director MAK. For the new street lighting on Ringstraße boulevard, the Vienna Municipality installed reproductions of historical street lamps, also in front of the MAK and the adjacent University of Applied Arts. Together with University Rector Gerald Bast, Peter Noever took a stance against this design policy. Even before the installation of the new lighting was completed, Noever came to an agreement with the municipal administration enabling him to present alternative innovative lighting concepts. The presentation of the Ringstraße project is seen by Ross Lovegrove, ARTEMIDE, and SHARP SOLAR as a start for a worldwide expansion of this innovative urban lighting concept. To convince other big cities all over the world of the SOLAR TREE and the unique idea of using renewable energy for energy-intensive urban street lighting is the plan.

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