As the world’s population continues to skyrocket and cities strain under the increased demand for resources, skyscraper farms offer an inspired approach towards creating sustainable vertical density. One of three finalists in this year’s Evolo Skyscraper Competition Eric Vergne’s Dystopian Farm project envisions a future New York City interspersed with elegantly spiraling biomorphic structures that will harness cutting-edge technology to provide the city with its own self-sustaining food source.
When considering the future needs of our cities, few urban designs address the world’s burgeoning population better than vertical farms. By 2050 nearly 80% of the world’s population will reside in urban centers, and 109 hectares of arable land will be needed to feed them.
Designed for the Hudson Yard area of Manhattan, Eric Vergne’s Dystopian Farm aims to provide New York with a sustainable food source while creating a dynamic social space that integrates producers with consumers. Based upon the “material logic of plant mechanics”, the biomorphic skyscraper is modeled after the plant cells of ferns and provides space for farms, residential areas, and markets. These organic structures will harness systems such as airoponic watering, nutrient technology and controlled lighting and CO2 levels to meet the food demands of future populations.
In addition to infusing dense urban areas with CO2-consuming green spaces, Vergne envisions the structures as dynamically altering the fabric of city life: “Through food production and consumption, this skyscraper sets up a fluctuation of varying densities and collections of people, bringing together different social and cultural groups, creating new and unforseen urban experiences that form and dissipate within the flux of city life.”
This year’s Evolo Skyscraper Competition resulted in an incredible crop of 416 projects from designers, architects, and engineers in 64 different countries. Their website currently lists the finalists, boiled down to three winners and 15 special mentions.