Gallery: Anti Smog Architecture: A Catalyst for Cleaner Air in Paris


Architect Vincent Callebaut’s latest project balances public galleries, meeting rooms and gathering spaces over canals and abandoned railroad tracks in the 19th Parisian district. The prototype uses green technologies and techniques but is more than just an example of sustainable design. Callebaut’s ‘Anti Smog: An Innovation Centre in Sustainable Development’ is a catalyst for cleaner air.

The project centers on the “Solar Drop”, an elliptical structure perched over the unused railroad tracks. The exterior is fitted with 250 square meters of solar photovoltaic panels and coated in titanium dioxide (TiO2). The PV system produces on-site electrical energy while the TiO2 coating works with ultraviolet radiation to interact with particulates in the air, break down organics and reduce air born pollutants and contaminants.

Callebaut describes the process as an intention to “absorb and recycle by photo-catalytic effect the cloud of harmful gases (Smog) from the intense traffic near Paris.” Under the smog eating exterior, the building houses public spaces with a central courtyard and natural lagoon, a place Callebaut envisions for teaching opportunities about urban ecology and renewable energy. The Solar Drop also harvests rainwater from green space on the roof for use inside the building.

The “Wind Tower”, the second component to Anti Smog, spirals into the air with a helical shape and a façade that alternates between vegetation and embedded Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWT) to capture the prevailing urban winds. Ramps lead visitors through museum space and out to a rooftop garden with views across Paris.

Anti Smog offers an innovative urban space that is engaging, powered by renewable energy and has a positive impact on the surrounding urban environment. In the words of the designer it is ‘”a self-sufficient dépolluante“. Oui indeed.

+ Vincent Callebaut Architectures


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  1. lhahn August 26, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    Sustainable architecture is indeed a very important topic. Check out The Angle (, where former president of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in Denver, Kin DuBois, will be blogging live from the Democratic National Convention. Kin will be relaying via the blog any developments on environmental standards and building, clean technology, and greenhouse gas emissions.

  2. Inhabitat » Grand... March 31, 2008 at 3:08 pm

    […] footprint. In order to do this, the structure takes advantage of a wealth of cutting-edge sustainable technologies. Climate is controlled by excellent insulation and building materials (20% of which are recycled) […]

  3. New Age Architectures |... March 16, 2008 at 11:10 am

    […] some engaging photos.  This building is designed to be an anti-smog, cleansing addition to the Paris urban landscape.   The article does not mention cost and I hope they have solid financial backing, but the […]

  4. Nicola February 5, 2008 at 1:35 pm

    Do you think about ordinary and extraordinary maintenance?

  5. Indev January 29, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    Such an awesome design, I wish Australian architects were this innovative and environmental aware…

  6. Fred Thompson January 29, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    Funny, at first glance I thought it was a huge sneaker… interesting design.

  7. cez January 29, 2008 at 12:13 am

    well….start biulding!! that way i can visit as soon as its complete! This thing should be great!

  8. Colin Smith January 28, 2008 at 7:38 pm

    I love the look of it, I cant wait to see more of theses buildings spring up.

  9. rima January 28, 2008 at 2:48 pm
  10. Alex Ribeiro January 28, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    Wow! What a amazing Jetson’s build!

  11. AlienFarmer January 28, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    Callebaut’s portfolio is simply amazing! I just wish we in the US could get more than just the aids memorial he did in San Fransisco. Not that its not also amazing, but I want the perfume jungle Hong Kong has from him…here in Iowa, hehe.


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