Paris is well known for its rich traditions of arts and culture. Now the city is looking to continue this legacy in the coming century by supporting a new project that perfectly blends a refined sense of style with innovative environmentally conscious designs.
The project is the brainchild of renowned architect Vincent Callebaut. It is located over an abandoned historic canal in the 19th Parisian district. Callebaut looks to freshen this elderly setting by building a curvaceous pair of buildings, one an egg like shape, the other a spiraling tower. The buildings will collectively provide truly unique public galleries, meeting rooms, and gathering spaces.
The somewhat egg-shaped ellipse is the first of the pair and is dubbed “Solar Drop." It rests serenely on abandoned railroad tracks. The exterior is a mixture of 250 square meters of solar panels and titanium dioxide. The photo-voltaic solar panels produce all of the building’s electricity, while the titanium dioxide reacts with organics and reduces airborne pollutants and contaminants when exposed to the UV radiation present in sunlight.
Callebaut says his objective with the structure is to “absorb and recycle by photo-catalytic effect the cloud of harmful gases (Smog) from the intense traffic near Paris." The building's spacious interior provides a public meeting space replete with a central courtyard and natural lagoon. The building also features strips of green plant cover on the rooftop. These strips collect rainwater for use in the lagoon and elsewhere in the building.
The companion of the “Solar Drop” is the elegant “Wind Tower." Rising up out of the water, the tower sport a helical façade, which alternates vegetation and Vertical Axis Wind Turbines. These turbines capture prevailing urban winds sweeping along the canal. The interior features a winding gallery. At the pinnacle visitors are treated to an attractive rooftop garden and views of the Paris city that is sure to take travelers’ breath away.
written by Stuart, February 08, 2008
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