As with any civilisation, built environments must be able to adapt. They must adapt to changing cultures, changing landscapes, and now a changing climate – both literally and socially. The construction industry no longer develops with blinkers on, placing industrial gain above the effects a building has on the environment and the economy. A spate of natural disasters around the world has further prompted proactive industry movements which have seen resilience architecture become as much of a priority under a holistically sustainable model.
It is for these reasons that the global architecture community has been endeavouring to create architecture that is structurally and environmentally more advanced that what is currently built.
HWKN Architects’ concept for the Skygrove high-rise looks at these challenges, placing a dual focus on both environmentalism and resilience, with each complementing the other.
Designed to function as a commercial building that includes vertical parkland space, the high-rise is actually planned for water positioning, preferably in a coastal location. Following principles of biomimicry, the building’s architectural structure is akin to that of a mangrove tree and is expected to function in the same way. The building’s frame has been designed to feature root-like structures that will dig deep into the foundations at a series of points, giving the building greater stability.
This specific form is expected to improve the building’s resilience when it comes to a number of environmental disasters, including rising sea levels, coastal flooding, storm surges and tsunamis.
The building is also expected to boast unforeseen self-sufficiency, with each floor designed to be completely self-sustaining. This will be further aided by the building’s ‘compartmentalised infrastructural façade’ which will house major functional facilities including plumbing, electrical lines and air supply.
Sustainability is as much about longevity as it environmentalism. Even if environmental issues were reversed, the environment will always be a changing landscape, which is why adaptability is the only long-term answer to a sustainable built environment.