urban design interventions: additions of trees, plantings, benches, curb extensions, lighting, sidewalk widening, and building setbacks to help greening the pedestrian environment throughout East Midtown. The conceptual designs introduce key elements that make public space effective and enjoyable – shade, places to sit, and places to meet.
The age of green is upon us. We have reached a point in our human evolution where science, math, and creative genius have discovered a way to suspend a living forest in mid air. The answer to city pollution is now Stefano Boeri’s Bosco Verticale, the world’s first 27-story microclimate apartment towers currently under construction in Milan, Italy. Built to function as city air purifiers, these lush apartments will include over 900 trees, 5,000 bushes, and 11,000 plants throughout the tower balconies. Each perch of life will aid in reducing city noise, moderating atmospheric temperatures, absorbing CO2 emissions, and acting as an energy sustainer for seasonal weather shifts.
Barcelona is always at the top of the list when it comes to finding precedents for street trees and boulevard design. What I appreciate most about these streets are the expansive space left for pedestrians, which is almost as much as the street itself. It would be incredible if more designers took this image into perspective when they began to think of their ideal “town centre boulevard”. I wish us all to stop designing 3ft wide medians that can’t even hold enough soil for trees, and start making more spaces for people to occupy the streets (safely).