With all of the controversy now surrounding off shore oil exploration, we're hoping to see more and more oil rigs become obsolete. But what can be done with these massive structures after they are no longer pumping out fuel? This provocative proposal, which was one of the finalists for the 2011 eVolo Skyscraper competition, takes an old rig and turns it into renewable energy equipped aquatic villages.
The idea is not new. In fact, the (disputed) world’s smallest country is an old oil platform. In the design by Ku Yee Kee and Hor Sue-Wern, the reclaimed oil rig is layered in rings of habitation units sharing center common and recreation areas. The stacked units share an incredible view of the vast ocean. Beneath the water are circular labs for marine research. The designers looked like they were having some fun, inserting a pleasure boat launch, cantilevered pool, and a huge domed assembly room crowning the rig.
The former oil producing industrial structure is now laden with renewable energy technologies — a shell of solar electric panels on the roof, tidal energy generators, and a huge wind turbine make for a robust level of energy harvesting day and night. The proposal is an exciting and playful design encouraging us to reconsider our abandoned industrial infrastructure.