• eVolo Skyscaper Competition

    The city of Sydney is embarking on a course of action that can only be described as reckless – opening up new so-called “priority growth areas” in pastoral areas to the northwest and southwest of the city. Around the world and in Sydney, arable land is diminishing, other species are being destroyed and climate change is threatening our own. We believe that there should be a three-pronged approach to solving these problems – population reduction or stabilisation, limiting the expansion of human settlements and greening our settlements and cities. Sydney, like other cities around the world needs to become much more compact with limits set to its growth. It is no longer acceptable for Sydney to continually expand to the west, gobbling up arable land and wilderness. We humans must create a new contract between ourselves and our planet, and this should be undertaken on a city by city basis which allows ourselves and other creatures to live in a state of peaceful co-existence. The medieaval walls of old cities were created for defensive purposes – to exclude an enemy. Now the situation has changed and we need to create defensive walls for nature instead.

    Our project includes a combination of a series of very tall tall green buildings (VTGBs) and a wall of building outsideof which the city would not be allowed to grow. The VGTB's would incorporate a variety of programmatic elements. In our example project "Raceme" there are offices at the lower levels with conference facilities above. The upper levels include communal facilities including childcare, gymnasium and meeting rooms for clubs and hobby groups. Its intended that in general the local forces of supply and demand would determine the programmatic mix of each VTGB, although local councils may require the inclusion of certain items such as low-cost housing, childcare, schools and other social services. We would applaud such inclusions and hope that each building might have its own community with a healthy mix of ethnic and socio-economic strata. The apartments (both single and double-storey) are arranged in various combinations of terraces and balconies. In all cases they are surrounded by balconies which provide shade and food. Our hope is that the facades would be largely edible consisting of tomatoes, cucumbers and other vegetables, vines, and herbs. In a hot location like Sydney deciduous vines will allow winter warmth to penetrate while blocking the fierce summer sun. In places, glass will reach the surface of the facade allowing uninterrupted views of the city.