Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Earth Science News .




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



WOOD PILE
Italy's high-rise forests take root around the world
By CÚline CORNU
Milan (AFP) Oct 8, 2017


As balconies bristle with tree branches and sunshine dapples the leaves of thousands of plants, two apartment buildings in the heart of Milan have almost disappeared under lush forest.

The brainchild of Milanese architect Stefano Boeri, the Bosco Verticale (Vertical Forest) uses more than 20,000 trees and plants to adorn the high-rise buildings from top to bottom - a project now being exported all over the world, from China to the Netherlands.

The two original leafy towers dominate the skyline in the northern Italian city, giving residents -- including celebrities like footballer Ivan Perisic -- an enviable view over the new district of Porta Nuova and beyond.

Cherry, apple and olive trees spill over balconies alongside beeches and larches, selected and positioned according to their resistance to wind and preference for sunlight or humidity.

Boeri said the idea came from his obsession with trees and determination to make them "an essential component of architecture," particularly as a weapon to combat climate change.

"I was in Dubai in 2007 and I watched this city growing in the middle of the desert, with more than 200 glass towers multiplying the effect of heat," he recalls.

He wanted instead to create something that "as well as welcoming life, can contribute to reducing pollution, because trees absorb microparticles and CO2".

"Cities now produce about 75 percent of the CO2 present in the atmosphere. Bringing more trees into the city means fighting the enemy on the spot," he said.

- 'Best Tall Building Worldwide' -

Opened in 2014, the Vertical Forest won the prestigious Frankfurt International Highrise Award, and the Chicago Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat named it Best Tall Building Worldwide.

"It's a unique thing to live here, we're in direct contact with the plants while being in the city centre and in a super modern skyscraper," says Simona Pizzi, who can see the mountains from her 14th floor apartment.

"The plants have developed a lot over the past three years, and we see them changing with the seasons," adds the proud owner of an apple tree, where the white flowers contrast magnificently with the green foliage.

Boeri worked closely with botanists to create a nursery of a thousand trees that have been trained to grow under specific conditions.

The team faced numerous challenges, from how the balconies should be structured to take the weight of the plants, to how to secure the tree roots and what needed to go into the soil.

They even carried out resistance tests at a hurricane centre in Miami.

"For every human being living in the building, there are about two trees, 10 shrubs and 40 plants," Boeri said.

- The future of housing? -

The vegetation soon transformed into a veritable wildlife park: 9,000 ladybirds brought over from Germany to eat parasites -- to leave the plants pesticide free -- multiplied over the space of a few weeks.

"The extraordinary thing that we did not expect was the incredible amount of birds that nested here. We have small hawks on the roofs, and swifts that had previously disappeared from Milan," Boeri said.

The architect and his team are now working on a dozen or so Vertical Forest projects around the world, including Lausanne in Switzerland, Utrecht in the Netherlands, Sao Paolo in Brazil and Tirana in Albania.

The aim in Eindhoven in the Netherlands is to swap the sort of luxury pads seen in the Milan project -- which go for some 11,000 euros ($12,900) per square metre -- for social housing, a project Boeri says he's particularly keen on.

And because the cost of the trees is low, it's not an unreasonable ambition, he says.

He is also thinking big in China, where not only are two towers under construction in Nanjing and a hotel in the works in Shanghai, but there are plans for a "Forest City" of some 200 buildings in Liuzhou.

"China is now realising it faces the dramatic problem of air pollution, but also of uncontrolled urbanisation, with cities growing out of suburbs, creating megacities," he said.

"Every year fifteen million peasants abandon the countryside to come to the city, we have to come up with some answers, with new green cities," says Boeri, who took part in the COP21 conference on climate change in Paris in 2015.

The architect has not patented the Vertical Forest and has even written a book revealing the secrets and techniques behind it, which he hopes will encourage a new, greener way of developing cities.

WOOD PILE
Poland rejects EU evidence on primeval forest dispute
Warsaw (AFP) Sept 29, 2017
Poland on Friday rejected evidence put before the European Court of Justice to prove illegal logging in the Bialowieza forest, a protected UNESCO site that includes Europe's last primeval woodland. During a court hearing in Luxembourg on September 11, the European Commission's representative showed satellite images of Bialowieza to show that Warsaw is defying the court's temporary injunctio ... read more

Related Links
Forestry News - Global and Local News, Science and Application

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

WOOD PILE
Trump warns federal help for Puerto Rico not open-ended

India's top court bans firecracker sales before Diwali

New military op in gang-plagued Rio favela

Hurricane survivors swap Caribbean seas for English peas

WOOD PILE
Microlasers get a performance boost from a bit of gold

Students, researchers turn algae into renewable flip-flops

New test opens path for better 2-D catalysts

CONFERS to Establish "Rules of the Road" for On-Orbit Servicing of Satellites

WOOD PILE
How global warming is drying up the North American monsoon

Did rapid sea-level rise drown fossil coral reefs around Hawaii?

Expanded bluefin tuna quotas could reverse recovery: scientists

Pacific's Niue creates huge marine sanctuary

WOOD PILE
In warmer climates, Greenlandic deltas have grown

Return of the Weddell polynya supports Kiel climate model

Winter cold extremes linked to high-altitude polar vortex weakening

Shipping risks rise as Antarctic ice hits record low

WOOD PILE
Genetically boosting the nutritional value of corn could benefit millions

Sustainable irrigation may harm other development goals

Are we at a tipping point with weed control?

Climate solution in soil

WOOD PILE
Magnitude-6.3 earthquake strikes northern Chile: USGS

Locals warned to stay away as Japanese volcano erupts

Do earthquakes have a tell sign

Preservation of floodplains is flood protection

WOOD PILE
Rwanda military uses torture to force confessions: HRW

New witness emerges over Rwandan genocide: French legal source

Nigeria: Cooperation 'key' to defeating jihadists

Three US Green Berets killed in Niger

WOOD PILE
Prehistoric humans are likely to have formed mating networks to avoid inbreeding

Scientists find more modern human traits influenced by Neandertal DNA

Ancient humans left Africa to escape drying climate

Stone Age child reveals that modern humans emerged more than 300,000 years ago




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement