Finalist

Bosco Verticale, Milan

Architects: Boeri Studio
Developer: Hines Italia SGR S.p.A.
Purpose: Residential building
Height: 80 m and 112 m
Completion: June 2014
Location: Milan, Italy

Bosco Verticale, © photo: Kirsten Bucher

Two residential highrises with greened façades stand in a park between Via Gaetano de Castilla and Via Federico Confalonieri in the north of Milan. They are part of a revitalization project initiated by the City of Milan which goes by the name of “Metrobosco”. The development on this 75,782-m² plot of land comprises not only these two residential highrises, but also an office highrise and a perimeter block development along Via Federico Confalonieri. However, it is only the residential highrises that have been greened. They are based on simple rectangular layouts and, with 19 (tower D) or 27 (tower E) stories, are of varying heights. Arranged around a central building core with elevators and a stairwell, the ledges of the various stories project out irregularly over the façades, where they form patios and balconies adorned with plants and trees. This means that each of the 113 different-sized apartments has access to at least one patio or balcony. High up on the treetops, the residents have their own “little forest” – because there are almost 900 trees growing close to the façades, mixed in with thousands of shrubs, bushes and ground-cover plants. The plants have been chosen and cultivated according to their position on the façades, after consultation with botanists and gardeners. Their maintenance is handled by a sophisticated irrigation system and is part of the overall concept. The wide diversity of plants corresponds, per highrise, to that found in an entire hectare of forest. This concept of living close to nature has been implemented not by using technology but through the plants themselves. They make for a pleasant microclimate and serve as protection from the sun.

Bosco Verticale, © photo: Kirsten Bucher
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