China: sustainable ‘farmscrapers’ unveiled in Shenzen

A masterplan featuring six sustainable ‘farmscrapers’ formed of pebble-like structures has been unveiled by French firm Vincent Callebaut Architects. Located in Shenzen, China, the Asian Cairns project showcases a distinctive urban system with each ‘farmscraper’ consisting of three interlacing eco-spirals of pebbles which weave their way up two megalithic towers. The project has been designed in response to the growing population of Shenzen, the need to cut C02 emissions and the increased urban development in the area.

Speaking about the design, Vincent Callebaut Architects explained: “In this context of hyper growth and accelerated urbanism, the Asian Cairns project fights for the construction of an urban multifunctional, multicultural and ecological pole. It is an obvious project to build a prototype of green, dense, smart city connected by the TIC [information and communication technologies] and eco-designed from biotechnologies!”

Inspired by cairns, the stone heaps found on mountains which mark out hiking trails, the six ‘farmscrapers’ will contain residential areas, offices and leisure spaces within the monolithic pebbles structures with a central boulevard forming the framework of each tower. Each of these pebbles represents an eco-quarter and is made of steel rings. These steel rings are linked to the central spinal column by Vierendeel beams with the interstitial spaces used to house suspended gardens.

As well as the innovative design, sustainability features heavily within the project with the inclusion of an open-air epidermis of photovoltaic and photo thermal solar cells as well as a forest of wind turbines covering the zenithal roofs. Large basins of viticulture and lagoons of phyto-puration have also been included in the project to recycle the waste water generated by the vertical farms included in the project.

The architects added: “The Asian Cairns project syntheses our architectural philosophy that transforms the cities in ecosystems, the quarters in forests and the buildings in mature trees changing thus each constraint into opportunity and each waste into renewable natural resources!”

Source: World Architecture News

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