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Stefano Boeri’s Beautiful, Sustainable Skyscrapers

Curators’ Corner

Stefano Boeri’s Beautiful, Sustainable Skyscrapers

Italian architect, Stefano Boeri, has a vision to combat pollution in style. Boeri is known for his design of Bosco Verticale (Vertical Forest), two residential towers in Milan hosting 900 trees and more than 2,000 plants. Completed in 2014, the project was designed to produce oxygen in the Italian city while also rehabilitating its historic district.

“Bosco Verticale is a new concept of skyscraper, where trees and people live side by side,” Boeri told designboom in 2014. “It is the first example in the world of a tower block which enriches the biodiversity of the flora and fauna of the city that houses it.”

With a PhD in architecture from University Iuav of Venice, Boeri focuses his design eye on urban areas in need of regeneration and redevelopment, now turning his sight on China. In a country where development is heavily driven by pollution, it was a natural choice for another pair of Boeri’s vertical forests, called the Nanjing Green Towers. Boeri’s latest project will host more than 2,500 plants and shrubs along with 1,100+ trees, becoming the first vertical forests in Asia.

“Boeri’s ambitious design hopes to produce 60 kg of oxygen per day while also absorbing 25 tons of carbon dioxide annually,” The Huffington Post reports.

In addition to serious health issues – one study linked 1.6 million deaths per year to pollution in China – smog is creating all sorts of inconveniences including regular closures of schools, expressways, and airports. With the initiative to radically reduce air pollution, including the replacement of nearly 70,000 gas guzzling taxis with electric vehicles, the construction of the Nanjing Green Towers couldn’t come at a better time. The project is expected to be completed in 2018.

The tallest of the two towers will be roughly 700 feet and will house a private rooftop club and offices, while the smaller tower will be home to a Hyatt hotel complete with a rooftop swimming pool.

The Nanjing Green Towers are an innovative way to mitigate a serious issue, and will hopefully give the residents of Nanjing both a breath of fresh air and an aesthetic addition to the cityscape. Hats off to Stefano Boeri.