Skyscraper competition celebrates the wildest ideas in architecture
The annual eVolo Skyscraper Competition is one of the most thought-provoking architecture contests around. Small on detail, but big on wild ideas, this year's crop of blue-sky conceptual designs includes a skyscraper made from genetically modified trees imagined for New York City and a water collecting tower that would hydrate Mexico City.
Originally conceived 15 years ago to promote new ideas for vertical living, this year's eVolo Skyscraper Competition consists of three winners and 20 honorable mentions. Read on below for a look at the three winners, before heading to the gallery to see each one of the 23 projects that are included.
"The Jury selected three winners and 20 honorable mentions from 492 projects received," says eVolo Magazine. "The annual award established in 2006 recognizes visionary ideas that through the novel use of technology, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations, challenge the way we understand vertical architecture and its relationship with the natural and built environments."
A Ukrainian team made up of Andrii Lesiuk, Mykhaylo Kohut, Sofiia Shkoliar, Kateryna Ivashchuk, Nazarii Duda, Mariia Shkolnyk, Oksana-Daryna Kytsiuk, and Andrii Honcharenko won first place in the 2021 eVolo Skyscraper Competition with an interesting idea for a tree-based tower (pictured above).
The project is named Living Skyscraper For New York City and would make use of a number of genetically modified fast-growing hardwood deciduous trees, which would be planted in specially prepared soil. They would then be grown into truly sustainable high-rise housing and/or office space. Though obviously far-fetched, it's a neat idea and feels like an evolution of the current crop of timber towers that are increasingly popular in cities around the world.
Second place went to the Lluvioso Skyscraper, by Israel's Amit Deutch, Roni Dominitz, and Tamar Kerber. The project envisions a water collecting skyscraper that would reach a height of 400 m (1,312 ft).
Conceived for Mexico City, it would collect huge amounts of rainwater with a canopy measuring 600 m (1,968 ft) in diameter. The water would then be used both for the tower itself and the surrounding area. Additionally, the building would somehow help to reduce flood damage when seasonal floods occur in the area.
Hmong Skyscraper, by Xiangshu Kong, Xiaoyong Zhang, and Mingsong Sun, won third place. This project envisions new housing that's inspired by the culture and architecture of the Hmong people, who have been required to relocate into new housing by the Chinese government due to the dilapidation of their traditional homes.
A series of high-rise towers that are inspired by Hmong stilt houses would serve as the basis for a new modern community. Over time the towers would be steadily expanded laterally as more residents moved in, with the idea being that they would continue to feel at home despite the growing size of the development.