Architecture student Yi Yvonne Weng has conceptualized these amazing web-like structures that could be built atop the Brazilian forest to serve as infrastructure for scientific studies. Called "The 6th Layer – Explorative Canopy Trail,” the design features light-weight, vertical structures with a high density webbing which fans out to become a platform on which researchers and eco-tourists can traverse the tree tops. Yi's work has earned her recognition as a recipient of the 2012 Foster + Partners Prize for excellence in sustainability and infrastructure.
Yi Yvonne Weng’s concept includes webbed mesh in three densities, the least dense of which contain metal rods for structural support. The mid-layer has a medium density so that birds may easily pass through undisturbed. The most dense layer is strong enough to support pathways. The tear-drop shaped hanging mesh lowers from the tree tops at specific heights to support plant specimen collection.
The main purpose of The 6th Layer – Explorative Canopy Trail is to provide a site for studying the Amazon Rainforest, so it is proposed to contain a research lab and an area for production processing. The proposal also looks to host eco-tourists, and includes with two units with basic living amenities.
Weng takes an interesting stance on how populating the tree tops could benefit the ecosystem: “…the positive occupation of the territory [that the project] enables could provide a level of surveillance that helps to protect both the endangered environment and the indigenous population,” says Weng.
The project was created during Weng’s fifth year diploma course at Architectural Association School of Architecture. Brett Steele, Director of the program says “The work of this year’s winner indicates the enthusiasm and imagination shown by AA Diploma students in addressing challenging, topical issues in architecture.”
As a recipient of the 2012 Foster + Partners Prize for excellence in sustainability and infrastructure, the work, along with that of six other recognized projects, will be displayed in October in a gallery at Foster + Partners.
Via Arch Daily