H2oh!

In the world of conceptual architecture, building on terra firma seems, well, just a tad passe. But on water? Aha! Now there’s a challenge... Eco-fabulous water houses, green floating hotels and now a sci-fi-tastic water city for 50,000 people that travels nomadically wherever the current takes it… 

Whilst the relatively new found obsession with ‘aquatecture’ has resulted in numerous eco-friendly floating houses having been built and successfully inhabited, the floating hotels, villages and cities are only just at digital prototype stage.

In an attempt to provide solutions for the millions of predicted future ‘climate change refugees’ flooded out by potentially devastating rising sea levels (could be us in London, peeps! and New York, Miami, Mumbai and millions living in developing countries too) these groovy, forward-thinking metropolises are not only eco-intelligent, they’re pretty dam cool to look at too.

Check out these weird and wonderful water babies…

THE LILYPAD
After some fervent splashing around in his wildest imagination, award-winning Belgian architect Vincent Callebaut presents The Lilypad – a prototype of a totally self-sufficient floating ‘Ecopolis’ able to accommodate 50,000 people.

With a whole host of ecologic merits including renewable energies a go-go (solar, thermal, photovoltaic, wind energy, hydraulic, tidal power, osmotic energies, phytopurication and biomas) the free-floating structure would sustainably produce more power than it would actually consume with zero carbon emissions!  The result? A harmonious coexistence of the couple Human / Nature.
Contact: www.vincent.callebaut.org

THE FLOATING AEROHOTEL
With a landing strip for zeppelins, docking for boats, restaurants, winter gardens and cafes, The Floating Aerohotel architect Alexander Asadov really has thought of everything. 

The space-age looking structure ‘hovers’ above the water, perched up on a combo of spokes and arms (which incidentally has significantly less costs for construction when compared with traditional man-made islands) and has apparently got certain Arab investors excited too. Could we be seeing this hotel for real on the shores of Dubai in the not too distant future?
Contact: http://asadov.ru

THE WATERPOD HOUSE
Designed by a group of New York artists to combat rising tides, this innovative floating eco habitat is due to be launched in May 09.  The 80x25 foot triple-domed WaterPod House, made from recycled wood, plastic and metal, will set sail down the Hudson River powered along by solar and wind energy. 

The design also enables food to be grown onboard via an irrigation process which cleverly purifies water from the Hudson. And because a life without art surely isn’t worth living, the pod will incorporate rotating art installations and nifty nocturnal lighting effects.
Contact: www.thewaterpod.org

Feature writer: Virginia Rowe  


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