Culture Urbaine – The Cloud Collective from The Cloud Collective on Vimeo.
The Cloud Collective’s Culture Urbaine Genève was one of the 13 gardens produced for the Genève: Villes et Champs festival. The festival “focuses on the co-habitation of the urban and the natural within the context of the urban expansion of Geneva.” The algae garden takes conventional notions of a garden and turns them on their head. It makes use the site’s abundance of carbon dioxide and sunlight and transforms a blighted landscape into a productive space. The algae produced can be used as combustible biomass, as raw materials for cosmetics or food, or simply for its air filtration properties.
Related: The Top 10 Most Innovative Algae-Powered Designs
The system of transparent tubes is attached to the concrete siding of a viaduct highway overpass that also does double duty as a pedestrian and cycling path. A steel structure supports all the secondary equipment such as pumps, filters and solar panels, and also functions as a marker for the passing traffic below. Didactic panels provide detailed information on the project for pedestrians and cyclists on the bridge. The project heralds a possible future for urban farming: a future that includes food and fuel production, the conservation of greenfield sites and the repurposing of existing infrastructure.
Of their choice of location, The Cloud Collective state: “Our site, a viaduct over a small highway, is particularly violent and quite out-of-tune with the idea of the garden as a peaceful natural haven. Instead, we focus on the character of the site and try to prove that even these locations of highways and car dealers – despite their anonymous and generic character – can play an important role in the production of food and biomass.” The Genève: Villes et Champs festival ran from 13 June to 4 October, 2014.
+ The Cloud Collective
Photos by The Cloud Collective