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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Images: SLA/Biecher Architectes/Emergie/Ogic

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    Photo by Hisao Suzuki

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2019 goes green: top environmental stories of the year

Nav Pal
23 Dec 2019

Green cities and innovative transport stand in the spotlight of 2019's most read environmental stories

WOHA goes green in Singapore

Singapore-based architecture firm WOHA is nearing the completion of Design Orchard, a green building and public realm aimed at enriching the burgeoning creative community in Singapore.

WOHA and a multidisciplinary team will soon realize a shared vision for “incubating” Singapore’s next generation of design through the new public building.

Located on Orchard Road, Asia’s most famous shopping street, the project aims to position design at the intersection of people, commerce and the city.

Designed with a clean and modern palette of concrete, glass, timber and landscape, the concrete structural walls feature circular openings to allow views, light and ventilation through the building. 

Sustainable Transportation going MAD

MAD Architects, led by Ma Yansong, has collaborated with Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HyperloopTT) on the development of an elevated, rapid transport system. MAD’s design demonstrates how the artificial can merge with nature through a new urban infrastructure, and while transforming the future of travel, also has the ability to reshape the way we plan and use public space. Providing enhanced connectivity between cities and people, the transportation system will also establish a renewed connection between people and their city through car-free raised green walkways along the roof of the tunnels, and activation spaces below in the form of parks and recreation areas.

MAD’s scheme harnesses solar and wind energy to power the HyperloopTT system. The transportation tunnels are outfitted with bendable solar panel skin modules that are used to power the Hyperloop itself, along with LEDs installed along its surface that function as interactive information boards. Bladeless wind turbine forests positioned at certain sections of the HyperloopTT system will harness the vorticity of the wind, creating a main source of power for the transportation network, lowering overall energy costs. 

Sustainability is further emphasized through urban farming opportunities. The base of each pylon is conceived to host crop-growing facilities that encourage urban farming. The light energy sourced from the solar-powered LEDs allows the plants to be self-sustainable, forming a friendly, green environment – a truly organic infrastructure.

Mechanical garden to give Paris green lung

SLA, Biecher Architectes and Emerige + Ogic have won the international competition to develop the 3.7 hectare former railway site of Ordener-Poissonniers into a new mixed-use ‘ecosystem neighborhood’ neighborhood in Paris, France.

Railways and heavy industry are reused and transformed into a new 3.7 hectare carbon neutral ‘ecosystem neighborhood’ based on nature-based design solutions, strengthened social cohesion and on-site renewable energy production. The neighborhood will include 1,000 new residents, big public parks, offices, a theater, public school, industrial design incubators, a graduate school of design, food courts and urban farming, all in the heart of Paris.

The team’s winning project for Ordener-Poissonniers “Jardin Mécano” (“Mechanical Garden”) creates a new urban ecosystem by preserving the site’s remarkable industrial heritage while adding an abundance of green, nature-based public spaces and carbon neutral architecture, creating a socially sustainable urban development for the heart of the 18th arrondissement of Paris.

The new neighborhood will include a mix of social and private housing for 1,000 new residents and 36,500 m2 of industrial design, arts, food and tech; including a new public school, a graduate school of design, offices, industrial design incubators, a cinema complex, a theater, a food court, shops and services, urban farming and traffic flow solutions prioritized for pedestrians and bicycles.

World's largest below-grade rail terminus

Hong Kong West Kowloon Station has been awarded Best Public Building Project at LEAF Awards 2019 as well as being shortlisted for Best Achievement in Environmental Performance Project. 

Hong Kong West Kowloon Station, designed by Andrew Bromberg, is one of the largest below-grade rail terminuses in the world. It sits adjacent to Victoria Harbour and serves as a gateway to Hong Kong and as a terminus to the high speed rail network of Mainland China. The inspiration for the design came from the converging forces on Hong Kong such as wind, traffic, tracks and pedestrian flows coming into the station. Many of the details were given to the architectural layering and orientation, such as the station entrance being placed in the south-west corner that provides more frontage and value to the commercial areas. This gives it better views of the harbour and eases access, making efficient use of the land and floor area resources and adapting to the urban reality of Hong Kong.

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