This floating forest concept offers an innovative answer to concrete jungles

by Kim Megson | 28 Oct 2015

A New York-based architectural design firm have proposed an innovative new way of integrating public green space in an urban context: by making it float.

Studio MMK entered their vision for a ‘floating forest’ in a competition to design a new public and cultural space in one of Seoul’s most historic streets. In their plans for the development, 23 pagoda trees appear to hover a little way above the traffic-filled streets below.

Speaking exclusively to CLAD, Studio MMK partner Jihoon Kim said: “We wanted to propose a different open space where people can sit down and relax in a calm and poetic environment. We wanted them to be able to rest under the trees, away from craziness of everyday life. That’s how we came up with the concept.

“Instead of proposing a high-tech, trendy, ‘iconic’ sculptural object out of context with the location – as you can find all too easily in architecture today – we wanted to suggest something which resembles the familiar while also being a little bit different.”

In the design, a ground platform is raised a few metres above street level in order to accommodate a thick base layer. This allows room for the trees to root without reducing the ceiling space in the underground level below. Studio MMK call this an “Integrated Structural Landscape System”.

In their plans for the Seoul cultural building, the architects designed an underground open space below the forest, sat in an existing basement. The structure’s concrete surface would be overlaid in parts by new brick. Kim said this would allow visitors to see and touch different layers of the building; engaging them with its past and present.

He told CLAD: “We think architecture is an accumulation of memories. While I’m not claiming that the every old building must be preserved intact, if we cannot avoid modifying a building then we must somehow respect the time and memories that it had.

“As Umberto Eco once said, ‘memories are built as a city is built. It could be said that architecture, from its beginnings, has been one of the ways of fixing memories.’”

A New York-based architectural design firm have proposed an innovative new way of integrating public green space in an urban context: by making it float. Studio MMK entered their vision for a ‘floating forest’ in a competition to design a new public and cultural space in one of Seoul’s most historic streets. In their plans for the development, 23 pagoda trees appear to hover a little way above the traffic-filled
CLD,ARC,DES,GRSP,URBR
In the plans, 23 pagoda trees appear to hover a little way above the traffic-filled streets below / Studio MMK
More news
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7587     
 
 
 
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7587     
 
 
 
company profile
Company profile: Blu Spas, Inc.
Blu is a full-service firm offering consulting, advisory and operating solutions.
videos
BluGalaxy a Division of Blu Spas
Blu Spas
This animation showcases the beautiful concept design of BluGalaxy Spa.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Manuelle Gautrand
"The cities where you have good cultural buildings and facilities – it’s a way for people to mix, to share the city in a much deeper way"

The French architect and winner of the 2017 European Prize for Architecture tells us why she is determined to surprise

CopenHill is a “crystal clear example of hedonistic sustainability,” says BIG founder Bjarke Ingels
"It was born from the sheer anxiety of having to submit something brilliant in a very short timescale"

How a moment of desperation led to BIG’s CopenHill, the clean power plant that’s doubling as a skiing and leisure destination. Magali Robathan speaks to the architects that made it happen

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
Grigoriou’s interiors work focuses on boosting wellbeing and reducing stress
Elina Grigoriou
"Temperature, noise level and colour affect our stress levels. As designers we should be asking ourselves, how do these things match up?"

The London-based interior designer and wellness expert hopes her new book will help readers understand how to design with wellbeing in mind

Interview: Elizabeth de Portzamparc
Elizabeth de Portzamparc
"We need to stop the destruction of our world through predatory practices. We need to think of the future"

The architect behind Nimes’ Musée de la Romanité on designing to counter loneliness and the need for more cultural buildings

features
Thomas Woltz
"I am very proud of stewarding the largest public space to be built in Manhattan in a century"

The Wall Street Journal’s Design Innovator of the Year on designing the gardens at Hudson Yards and looking to the Native Americans for ideas on how to create a resilient future

Interview: John McElgunn and Stephen Barrett
Stephen Barrett (left) 
and John McElgunn (right) were both made partners at RSHP in 2016
"Leisure space – public space – is at the very root of democracy, and architecture is about democracy"

As RSHP completes its latest cultural project, we speak to two of its partners about why Richard Rogers isn’t leaving his succession to chance

Last word: Tina Norden
Tina Norden
"We have created an approach which is playful, provocative but also functional"

Conran and Partners’ Tina Norden on playing with colour at Prague’s newly redesigned Hotel Maximilian

cladkit product news
Painting with Light pushes boundaries to create unforgettable visual concepts
The team combines lighting, video, sound and special effects, with scenic and architectural elements, to create unforgettable visual experiences
Megan Whitby
Belgium-based light and video design studio, Painting with Light, will translate the story of your location into a visual experience, ...
Siminetti unveils first glimpses of Mother of Pearl decorative surfaces inspired by the four seasons
The new winter design is finished with naturally occurring hexagonal patterns found in snowflakes
Megan Whitby
Siminetti has collaborated with British designer Chrisanna London to create a luxury Mother of Pearl decorative surface range inspired by ...
Atelier Alain Ellouz launches handcrafted precious stone lighting collection
LYRA has a sleek, cylindrical design complete with an elegant brass dimming switch
Megan Whitby
LYRA, GAMA, MONA and ATHENA are the first pieces from designer Atelier Alain Ellouz’s new.édition collection of handcrafted stone lighting ...
cladkit product news
Matteo Thun grows Allaperto collection with new suspended outdoor armchair
Megan Whitby
Allaperto, the lounge collection spawned by the partnership between design studios, Matteo Thun, Ethimo and Antonio Rodriguez, has been expanded ...
Cosm unveils Experience Centre with ‘one of a kind’ LED dome
The new Experience Centre houses a 20m LED dome
Magali Robathan
Cosm, a global technology company that builds end-to-end solutions for immersive experiences, has unveiled its Experience Centre which houses a ...
ASPA International launches handheld UV-C light disinfection lamp
The compact plug-in product can be used easily in a commercial spa or domestic setting to disinfect surfaces with UV-C light
Megan Whitby
For over 30 years, ASPA International has designed and built high-quality spas for the hotel, health and wellness sectors. During ...
cladkit product news
Móz Designs columns anchor the world’s largest indoor aquarium
The design of the columns was inspired by the sea
Magali Robathan
After a two-year renovation, Oakland-based metal experts Móz Designs have unveiled their inclusion in Georgia Aquarium’s new shark gallery. Located ...
LianTronics’ glasses-free 3D Star Trek LED screen attracts attention
Magali Robathan
LianTronics’ giant curved LED wall with stunning glasses-less 3D spaceship display effect has attracted many on the street of Chengdu, ...
Christie laser projectors power new Five Senses Bubble dome theatre
The dome aims to integrate technology with arts and culture
Magali Robathan
Christie® GS Series 1DLP® laser projectors are delivering vivid and lifelike visuals in a new dome theatre located in Xiong’an ...
x
Sign up with CLAD for regular news updates