Stefano Boeri Architetti has recently revealed plans and renderings for a vertical forest as an affordable residential skyscraper. Stefano Boeri is not the first to integrate vertical forests in high rise residential buildings, however, he is the first to integrate them into affordable social housing. Offering panoramic views of Paris, this building is located in the town of Villiers Sur Marne in the eastern quadrant of the Parisian metropolitan area.
The project is a part of a new urban development plan called ‘Balcon sur Paris’, where other architects such as Kengo Kuma and Associates are also planning buildings. Stefano Boeri is recognized for his urban vertical forests. He has designed similar models in cities like Milan in Italy, Nanjing in China, and Utrecht in the Netherlands.
This skyscraper consists of over 19 floors which include 125 affordable social housing units to house lower-income social groups, especially young people. Each one of the residential units features a selection of trees, plants, and shrubs, in addition to balconies that offer beautiful views of the town. The main elements of the building are a courtyard, a sloping roof, and a hanging garden with 600 square meters of the vertical plantation.
About 5,200 shrubs and 125 trees will be planted along the 75m structure, with over 70 different species of plants. This aims not only to improve the air quality but also reduce energy consumption and urban heat island effect. Moreover, the east-west sides of the building will allow both natural light and natural ventilation into the residential units.
The architects of this project believe that the typology of social housing needs to be upgraded in order to provide the inhabitants with an improved quality of life. Consequently, the project addresses the problems commonly faced in social housing. Its main goal is to refine the quality of life commonly lived in social housing units.
According to Stefano Boeri, “The high-rise building of Eindhoven confirms that it is possible to combine the great challenges of climate change with those of housing shortages. Urban forestry is not only necessary to improve the environment of the world’s cities but also an opportunity to improve the living conditions of less fortunate city dwellers. “