Hacking Architecture with the Conceptual Urban Space Station

The urban space station is a project taking aim at local environmental health, one building at a time.  Described by the designers as "parasite architecture," the semi-permanent structure sits atop any roof as it filters air, grows food, and re-uses organic waste for inhabitants.  

Some key positive elements raised in the video include:

  • Mobility, the space station can be dropped into place or built on site
  • Human scale construction methods
  • Food production
  • Indoor air quality improvement
  • Uniquely "prescribed" to the needs and wants of the building to which it is applied

Continuing the dialogue about sustainable architecture is as equally important as the construction itself.  Some issues the designers raise in the video include: open architecture, local environmental health, and altruism.  There is a very interesting relationship between the three ideas, and one that is probably behind many, if not all green initiatives.  

Urban

The space station team will provide open source plans to build a profitable mini eco-system, which will in turn improve the environmental health for all those involved, while being a catalyst for urban/societal lifestyle changes.  The quest to improve ones' health (and bank account), will ultimately improve the health of those around him/her.   A novel concept indeed.  However, when it comes down to the bottom line, will it be the business or the individuals that ultimately benefit?

UrbanSpaceStation

While the feasibility a system like this that actually works well is very low, this concept does have some relevance to the green building community.  Perhaps above all, the urban space station is important as a built experiment.  Designer Natalie Jeremijenko states: "It's most important function [is] as an icon for future possibilities."  It is a creative attempt to push the boundaries of urban design, and to continue the conversation around sustainable living solutions.  As the green movement matures, it is critical to continually produce new concepts to challenge the ways of the past, and to ensure that the movement is more than a media-driven fad.  Let's keep the ideas coming …

Photo credits: Cesar Harada.


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  • Alastair

    Music to go with this……….

    Urban Spaceman – Neil Young

  • http://ru-ru.facebook.com/people/Drop-Shevnin/1354330767 Drop Shevnin

    super puper green design for kids

  • http://www.tommymanuel.net/blog Tommy Manuel

    I find this to be a more interesting than other experiments I’ve seen. This is being well considered from a functional standpoint. I may have missed this, but those turbines should be linked up to sensors both in the urban space station and the rooms they serve below that monitors the air quality and would trigger the turbines to transfer the air as intended. Other things that the idea would need to address is the ratio of plants to occupants, even the type of plants, which would in turn impact the size and configuration of the urban space station. Cool concept, like an biological HVAC system! I can see ASHRAE getting on board with this.

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