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Green

The "homo urbanicus" and his balcony

Submitted by A-PP on Wed, 2012-06-27 10:40

 

In 2008, the United Nations published a report stating that over 50% of the world population now lives in an urban environment. Visiting world capital cities, it is striking how some cities seem more crowded than others. Actually, population density is uneven. For instance, Manhattan and Paris, count respectively 27 152 inhabitants/km² or 70 323 inhabitants /mi² and 21 196 inhabitants /Km² or 54 899 inhabitants /mi². In comparison, London and Los Angeles only count respectively 4 984 inhabitants /Km² or 12 909 inhabitants /mi² and 803 inhabitants /km² or 2 081 inhabitants /mi².

In Paris, the increase in population density has impacted how balconies are integrated into everyday life. Balconies no longer seem to be simply used as “shelves” for geraniums. Rather they are mostly turned into gardens, while a few are stacked with bamboos or lush plants to build a screen. As for the larger balconies, they are designed so that life can be enjoyed from above…

And naturally, the concept has been applied to full scale architectural projects. For example: architect Édouard François built the « Tower-Flower » in 2004 in Asnières, just across the Paris periphérique. On all balconies, of the building’s façade, François has hung giant flower pots, with bamboos shooting up to the next floor, discreetly rustling in the wind.

Date of publication: 
27
June
2012

Tomorrow's House

Submitted by admin on Sat, 2011-11-26 22:39

 

The new concept “Tomorrow’s House” was recently presented at Batimat Tradeshow in Paris . The concept showcases the future of individual housing in terms of the environment, architecture and technology.

Designed by architect Eric Wuilmot, the house is predominately made of wood. Wood was chosen for its qualities unmatched by concrete or stone, and because wood is plentiful. Facing south, the house is built around a glass-covered patio, which, like a convertible is removed in the summer. The combined use of glass roofs and solar screens, provides primary energy for light, heating, etc.

The 2,153 sq feet house is made of 3 pre-fabricated modules, designed to be assembled in approximately a month. Each module serves different purposes: the entrance, sleeping and living areas. Wuilmot designed the house to have a facile form and lucid lines allowing the owner to personalise their home. Simple in style, the concept includes enough technological advances to please a tree-hugger, house a designer or excite a techno-geek. For instance: The owner can control the house’s function with a universal remote control.

by Charlotte Louise Ho

Date of publication: 
1
November
2007
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