Not all corporate firms are apathetic when it comes to integrating sustainable design. Architectural powerhouse SOM recently revealed a new landmark tower designed by their resident architect Mustafa Abadan for the city of Seoul, Korea. A unique gesture in skyscraper design, not only is it a sleek spire shining brightly against the drab urban sprawl, but it also proposes a new approach to designing high-performance towers. Located in the heart of Seoul’s Digital Media City, the new namesake tower will also feature an incredible 'living' atrium that will provide both light and air to the inhabitants within.
The Digital Media City Tower is an exercise in fusing technology with the environment to create a sustainable space through reduced energy consumption and comfortable circulation. Inspired by the filtration exhibited by a marine sponge, the new tower finds its ‘living’ core within the interior atria, which acts as the lungs for the tower, maximizing both air circulation and filtration through active phytoremediation walls — these walls are able to both temper and refresh the quality of interior air throughout the building. While the void is meant to capitalize on stacked air flow, and in turn drive the wind turbines sited at the top of the spire, the open space actually allows for an incredible infusion and refraction of natural daylight, dramatically reducing any dependency on mechanical systems for lighting. These sustainable systems reduce the overall energy use by 65 percent.
Once complete, the new tower will house retail space at the lowest levels, with the office, residential and hotel units filling out the rest of the construction.