Imagine if all built environments were constructed around the landscape, letting flora and fauna grow freely as nature planned. One such design in the city of Haifa in Israel took that concept to heart. The project, completed by Schwartz Besnosoff Architects and Bar Orian Architects, is the Zielony Graduate Student Village, an urban apartment complex woven with walking paths that connect habitants to friends, parks, a community center and a pre-school - all on one green plot. Check out our exclusive photos below.
The built environment ensures that fauna and flora can flourish uninhibited by human presence, embracing the traditional modes of communal living and shared resources. But instead of only benefitting rural communities, this project translates traditional modes of living for modern urbanites, allowing families to live in an affordable community with lush outdoor space and a good school for their children.
Comprised of 215 housing units connected by seven walking paths, the village is located near the main entrance of Technion University and includes a community center, preschool classrooms and a multipurpose hall that serves as a social hub. Graduate students’ families and small children can safely walk to these facilities without the danger of crossing the street.
The ecologically-built facades were oriented on a north–south facing slope, providing optimal climate conditions and verdant views. The buildings were constructed with inexpensive and natural materials including stone, concrete, wood and plaster. As for the surrounding topography, it was left to grow as wild as can be – just the way it should be.
Tour courtesy of Vibe Israel
All images by Laura Mordas-Schenkein for Inhabitat