Leonel Ponce

SeArc Reintroduces Marine Life in Coastal Cities with ECOncrete

by , 10/19/11
filed under: Architecture, biomimicry

searc, econcrete, marine infrastructure, shoreline degradation, environmentally active infrastructure, shimrit perkol-finkel, ido sella, fish habitat

Precast ECOncrete modules have a lower pH than common concrete, which encourages enhanced biogenic buildup in the form of calcium carbonate deposits. These deposits, formed at an accelerated rate due to the material’s chemical composition, stimulate colonization and growth of small coastal organisms. Surface texture of ECOncrete structures is more porous and its surface less smooth than most finished concrete, providing crevices for deposits and organisms to settle in. On a larger scale, ECOncrete components are designed to furnish fish and other larger organisms with a non-uniform profile, modeling the surface to allow for nursing grounds, nooks to hide from predators, and habitats for water filtering organisms. Essentially, ECOncrete structures simulate coral reefs and rocky coastal habitats while incorporating into marine infrastructure without compromising its traditional functions.

searc, econcrete, marine infrastructure, shoreline degradation, environmentally active infrastructure, shimrit perkol-finkel, ido sella, rip rap habitat

SeArc has partnered with landscape architecture firm Studio Urbanof to create prototypes for different ECOncrete modular components, designed to plug into different kinds of urban marine infrastructure. Ecological armor units, based on currently used concrete tetrapods deployed along the Israeli coast, are arranged into piers and other breakwater formations that leave continuous pathways between components for fish to swim along.

Rip-rap modules consist of concentric shallow pools that can be placed along tidal zones, forming or extending marine nursing habitats. Sea walls are best incorporated at marinas and ports, providing a variety of notches for bivalves and other coastal organisms to colonize. Additional modules for ECOncrete units include fish habitats integrated with pile foundations for piers, and a terrestrial green wall that actually allows vines to take root upon the wall surface.

SeArc understands the value of preserving biodiversity threatened by human activity and cities, whether on land or in the sea.

+ SeArc

+ Studio Urbanof

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1 Comment

  1. lazyreader October 20, 2011 at 8:06 am

    It’s an artificial reef or shoal. We’ve done this before.

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