A tale of verdant towers or vertical forests.

A tale of verdant towers is one of my hopes for when we emerge on the other side of the Corona Virus.

Bosco Verticale, or Vertical Forest, is a pair of residential towers—the taller measuring 111 metres, the smaller 76—near Milan’s Porta Garibaldi railway station. Completed in 2014, they are a riot of plant life, festooned with 900 trees, 5000 shrubs and 11000 perennial plants; the 400 condominium units tucked into this verdant facade house happy urban dryads.

Designed by Stefano Boeri with help from a team of horticulturalists and botanists, the project was inspired by The Baron in the Trees, a 1957 novel by Italo Calvino. A microhabitat that converts 44000 pounds of carbon each year, the site is home to hermit wild bees, bumblebees, hoverflies and over 20 species of birds.

The shaggy exterior also moderates temperatures inside the buildings and protects against wind, dust and noise pollution. Solar panels provide renewable energy, while filtered grey water, from basins and baths, irrigates the greenery. Boeri’s urban forestry is a dazzling antidote to the environmental impact of cities, and he is replicating his model across the world. In Paris, he is building Forêt Blanche, a 54-metre tower whose walls will constitute a full hectare of woodland. His Forest City in Lishui, China, will contain 40000 trees and one million plants.


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Comments 1

  1. Yes please please can the post-virus recalibration include exactly these sort of developments.

    It is complete madness not to be designing buildings and infrastructure that actively use the magic of nature to cut back pollution, recycle waters, use wind for ventilation and cooling, solar bricks and roof tiles, battery power storage ….. on and on it goes.

    Bet the net “economic cost” if that is what our leaders insist on using would be a positive.

    And while we are at it how about reintroducing school sport and dietary education to stop the explosion of obesity and diabetes.

    Now that would be a positive recalibration ….

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