eVolo Magazine is pleased to announce the winners of the 2021 Skyscraper Competition. The Jury selected 3 winners and 20 honorable mentions from 492 projects received. The annual award established in 2006 recognizes visionary ideas that through the novel use of technology, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations, challenge the way we understand vertical architecture and its relationship with the natural and built environments. It is a forum that examines the relationship between the skyscraper and the natural world, the skyscraper and the community, and the skyscraper and the city.
The FIRST PLACE was awarded to LIVING SKYSCRAPER designed by Andrii Lesiuk, Mykhaylo Kohut, Sofiia Shkoliar, Kateryna Ivashchuk, Nazarii Duda, Mariia Shkolnyk, Oksana-Daryna Kytsiuk, and Andrii Honcharenko from Ukraine. The project investigates the use of genetically modified trees to shape them into living skyscrapers that offer green habitable spaces to cities.
The recipients of the SECOND PLACE are Amit Deutch, Roni Dominitz, and Tamar Kerber from Israel for the project LLUVIOSO SKYSCRAPER. This novel high-rise gathers rainwater to refill Mexico City’s groundwater supply.
HMONG SKYSCRAPER designed by Xiangshu Kong, Xiaoyong Zhag, and Mingsong Sun from China received the THIRD PLACE. The proposal envisions a sky frame that allows traditional Hmong houses to plug in. The skyscraper grows vertically and horizontally with the addition of urban spaces.
The Honorable Mentions are a collection of projects that use modern technologies and materials to offer new high-rise solutions. Some of these proposals include urban parasitic systems, vertical urban fabrics, and plug-in cities among other novel designs.
The Jury was formed by Koray Duman [Principal, Büro Koray Duma], Reza Najafian [Principal, ReNa Design], Arto Ollila [Partner, Aarti Ollila Ristola], Eric Parry [Principal, Eric Parry Architects], and Isa Ye [Founder, designverse. Founder, Young Bird Plan].
Living Skyscraper for New York City
Andrii Lesiuk, Mykhaylo Kohut, Sofiia Shkoliar, Kateryna Ivashchuk, Nazarii Duda, Mariia Shkolnyk, Oksana-Daryna Kytsiuk, Andrii Honcharenko (Ukraine)
One of the main goals of the project is to grow a living skyscraper on the principle of sustainable architecture.
The building will function in the middle of a grey megalopolis and solve a number of important environmental and urban issues. By analyzing the active process of urbanization and a decrease in the percentage of green spaces as a phenomenon that provokes a number of environmental problems.
We believe that by integrating genetically modified trees during the stage of their growth and development into architecture, we can restore the balance between the digitalized megacities and the Earth’s resources, which are gradually depleted.
A skyscraper tree is a separate living organism with its own root system, irrigation, care mechanisms, and features of development focused on its adaptation to use in architecture. It is a group of unique fast-growing and tall hardwood deciduous trees, which are planted in groups in specially prepared soil (to obtain resources) and in the process of their growth from a unique architectural volume.
Lluvioso Skyscraper Collects Rainwater And Replenishes Groundwater In Mexico City
Amit Deutch, Roni Dominitz, Tamar Kerber (Israel)
The Lluvioso groundwater refilling facility is a mixed-use high-rise structure designed as a response to Mexico City’s variable water-related issues such as flooding, water shortage, and their side effects. The solution we examined in our project utilizes the high-rise altitude to gather rainwater and refill the city’s groundwater supply.
This field of high-rise structures spread out over the city’s flood risk areas, at a height of 400m, would harvest rainwater using an external membrane layer detaching from the building’s facade. The external layer consists of 10 wings, anchored to the main structure at a height of 100m in order to allow the city’s future vertical growth. Thus, resulting in a 600m diameter rain-water collecting Canopée covering a typical city quarter. The collected water would then be directed down into the aquifer as well as upwards towards a pendulum water tank (for self-use). This proposal seeks to reduce flood damage, fill the aquifer and enhance the water supply for the city’s residents.
Hmong Skyscraper Is A Stack Of Traditional Houses Unified By Vertical Public Space
Xiangshu Kong, Xiaoyong Zhang, Mingsong Sun (China)
In order to build a well-off society in an all-around way, the Chinese government has issued relocation policies to the villages to help the Hmong stay away from their dilapidated places of residence and move to the suburbs of cities to provide a modern and affluent life. Although the original intention of the government is good, more and more ethnic minorities are unable to adapt to the new places of residence. They miss their arable land, yards, streams, and so on. We try to design a skyscraper. We try our best to keep farmers’ memory and lifestyle of their original hometown, and at the same time let them enjoy the convenience of modern urbanization.
We extract the structure of the local stilt style building, extract the wooden skeleton, and then use the crane to move the original wooden house, combine the two to form the basic form of the skyscraper, and then more and more houses are moved to the skyscraper, and the skyscraper gradually lengthens laterally. To retain the local block form, we organized the scattered houses into several districts. At the same time, we used the roof as the traffic and platform to strengthen the traffic connection between the houses. Then we combine the functions needed by local residents, such as arable land, streams, dance square, forest, public spaces, etc. And constantly enrich our architectural space to preserve the lifestyle of the Hmong family.
Up In The Squair: Skyscraper As Vertical Continuation Of Urban Space
Alina Kandyba, Emil Stefansson, Josefin Antus, Karl Östvall (Sweden)
Up in the Squair is a re-imagination of the skyscraper as a vertical continuation of urban space; a proposal focused on the experience of the user exploring the dynamics of spaces, derived from elements found in historic city centers.
The Sponge: Skyscraper To Collect Rainwater For Drinking And Farming In Africa
Lee Jae Uk, Kim Ji Hoo (South Korea)
The Sponge project is a water circulation housing with water and sewage facilities, but their homes can be built using the traditional housing methods they have gained from their long experience. We just provide a residential space with clean water. If the project provides water infrastructure, it will be able to use the time spent on farming, growing water, as well as people’s health, to live a self-sufficient life without the help of international organizations.
Pyramids: Origin Of The First Modern Cities
Adam Fernandez (France)
The PYRAMIDES project aims to offer an alternative to the architects of the past. That of building new cities based on the same divine laws. Through which the people and the pharaohs would cohabit together. This city is organized around an oasis. It keeps an ecological reserve in its core where wild flora and fauna share a common shelter protected from the sun. Functioning as a green lung and natural air conditioner, the inhabitants of PYRAMIDES will be able to walk there and enjoy a temperate climate.
Synonym Tower Uses Waste From The Nagorno-Karabakh War As Building Materials
Zhang Zhenpeng, Feng Jialu (China)
Synonym Tower is made of construction waste caused by the war. A large amount of construction waste is difficult to transport and recycle. The concrete, stones, masonry, muck, bricks, asphalt, sand, glass, metal, plastic, etc. Reuse of wood, organic matter, etc. is feasible. Besides, constructors of Synonym Tower are the belligerents. The construction process itself was a process of communication and cooperation. People were able to stop fighting and turn to build buildings. In this process, peace will also be built. In addition to providing basic asylum, housing, and other functions for refugees, Synonym Tower itself also exists as a memorial to the war.
Printscraper: Rapid 3D-Printed Skyscraper For Reconstruction In China
Liu Yifei, Tian Yu, Wang Hangdi, Zhou Beiyu (China)
The Printscraper is driven by solar and nuclear energy and transfers within the service radius of the city. During construction, the three auxiliary towers on the side and the cantilever membrane structure spread out to cover the entire construction area, using 3D nozzles for operation. The lower part of the building is equipped with a viewing platform and a vertical park open to all citizens. People can visit and monitor the progress of the project while the Printscraper stays in the block, or simply treat it as a temporary good place to meet others.
Mood Catcher Skyscraper Design To Treat Mental Disorders During The Pandemic
Yao Junji, Liu Yuxi, An Peiyan, Chen Yuxuan, Huang Yunting (China)
The high-rise building is designed to meet the needs of general psychological counseling and treatment while targeting the common emotional issues in psychological problems and to achieve immersive treatment through information exchange and interaction between the building space and the users. It will also serve as an activity center integrating counseling,therapy, recreation, and entertainment, becoming part of the daily life of Hong Kong residents, popularizing mental health knowledge, and breaking down social prejudices.
The Pilgrim Skyscraper Brings Education To Remote Places Worldwide
Michał Wachura, Kamil Wróbel (Poland)
The project consists of three stages: the first is the production of specialized research and education units in assembly towers. The second is the transport of units using flying modules with an airship-based foot system to selected places on the globe where the teaching systems do not exist or are at a low level. The third stage is the creation of educational centers that give people access to knowledge, tools, and technologies of the modern world. Giving them the opportunity to level the playing field.
Urban Links: Suspended Habitable Bridges Above Existing Cities
Xinru Yang, Jiang An, Ning Sun, Yunwei Pan, Lifa Lin (China)
In this conceptual design, the building is dynamic, not fixed somewhere in the city. The building consists of a steel frame, pipes, tower cranes, and building units. The building unit can be transported on the track by a tower crane and slide on the track with a traffic function. The pipeline in the steel frame can transport goods, and the logistics become faster. After determining the basic form and concept, we screened Chinese cities and finally determined that Beijing was the project’s design location. The reason is that Beijing is currently one of the most developed cities in China, but it also brings a series of problems, such as overpopulation and traffic congestion. Moreover, our “urban passage” is based on the development of airspace. While changing the urban buildings and transportation methods will not affect the existing urban space and expand the new urban space and mode.
Terra Mycelia: Skyscraper Regenerates Farming Soil
Linnea Pettersson, Ludvig Sundberg, Carmen Povedano Olleros, Evelina Björndal (Spain, Sweden)
This project proposes a rehabilitation of our soil by using mycelium to transform waste products from the agricultural industry into highly nutritious and healthy soil, thereby repairing the lost chain of events in every ecosystem. The high-rise shape uses a minimal footprint which allows the farmers to use their land during the rehabilitation while simultaneously maximizing the number of nutrients produced. It stands as a machine for ecosystem recovery. A monument to our symbiotic relationship with nature.
Ice-Making Skyscraper For The Arctic Ocean
Lu Wang, Shuangjiang He, Ning He, Youjia Lv, Limin Wang (China)
We propose a low-energy ice-making method: by reducing the salt content of seawater to make it easier for seawater to freeze naturally, using the method of “freezing a huge piece of ice layer by layer” to accelerate the freezing. When we use seawater, we also use pressure difference to make seawater enter the building naturally, so the whole ice-making process almost consumes no energy.
Biorefinery Skyscraper: A Carbon Negative Building For Hackney, London
Daniel Hambly (United Kingdom)
The biorefinery sits atop an old street roundabout, which is directly on the border between the London boroughs of Hackney and Islington. Upon researching the old street further, it was discovered that the roundabout sits atop a sewer intersection. This provided an interesting opportunity to create the biorefinery within the tower, which would pump sewage up from the sewer, then extract clean water from the sewage, followed by a fermentation process that converts the released gas into biofuel, which can be used to produce electricity.
Self-Sustainable Skyscraper For Virus Outbreaks
Yinan Qin, Bo Wei, Jingting Yan, Chao Xie (China)
The design features a new mode of human residence under extreme conditions where infectious diseases break out at any time in the future. It’s a fully enclosed three-part modular building. The lower part is a quarantine area for those who contract a virus; the middle part is a virus monitoring area for those who are in an unknown health status, which also serves as a buffer zone for people’s commuting and activities; the upper part is a space of residential units with absolute safety.
Cliff Village In Sichuan, China
Dian Rui, Shuangyu Teng, Yucheng Feng (China)
Cliff Village is located in Sichuan Province, China. It is an isolated ‘island’ in the mountains which is 800m above the ground deep. The local villagers live a self-sufficient life. The only rattan ladder is important transportation for them to communicate with the outside world. Although the steel ladder has been rebuilt in Cliff Village, the poverty problem has become prominent due to inconvenient transportation. Thus, we hope to build a vertical traffic tower to solve the problem of inconvenient traffic in Cliff Village. At the same time, we hope to increase industrial possibilities in the building to solve the poverty problem of villagers.
Post-Pandemic High-Rise Urban Planning
Shuxian Li, Qiuchen Zheng, Yujia Hu, Jiaxin Wen (China)
We imagine that in the post-epidemic era, in order to avoid the risk of infection caused by long-distance commuting and purchasing, people’s activities will return from the city to the community. We imagine that there is a spontaneously formed skyscraper in the gap between community buildings: the daily necessities (food, energy, and anti-epidemic products) needed by people are set up on the upper part of the building, and transported down to reduce the possibility of pollution. Build up the used space, and if necessary, it can be completely isolated from the outside.
Pathway Of Belonging: Multi-Function Skyscraper In Morocco For Immigrants
Leonie Blum, Katharina Frank, Ritaj Albaje, Simon Sundin (Sweden)
The skyscraper named ‘Pathway of Belonging’ is located in Morocco. However, due to its growing economy, is Morocco now an attractive destination country for immigrants. The program of the building and the experiences within are dictated by the immigrants themselves. Designed to grow over time as immigrant populations fluctuate, the building is purposely unfinished. By adding more units on top of each other, it provides spaces for future migrants to live out their cultures and traditions.
Physarum Skyscraper Cleans Oceans Pollution
Habib Shahhoseini, Mohaddeseh Eskandarzadeh, Ardalan Kiavar, Saba Salahpour, Ata Rad (Iran)
The purpose of participating in this competition is to present a mechanism suspended on the surface of the oceans called the Skyscraper of Environmental Care that can be a response to eliminate human environmental pollution in the air, water, and seabeds at the same time. In the design process, a fungal single-celled living algae (called Physarum) with animal-like behavior (with capabilities such as very high intelligence, self-healing power, rapid movement and growth, high adaptation to the environment, and ultimately immortality) that living in the oceans was used as the main constituent element of the studied skyscraper.
Time Machine Skyscraper – High-Tech Residential Tower
Seyed Shervin Hashemi (United States)
Time Machine initiates a novel approach to constructing objects with spatial properties, one that integrates the construction’s technical solutions along with an aesthetic solicitude with composition, enforced to immerse functionality as an emergent property of both. Objects are to exist not merely to express the aesthetic of the artist’s perception but also to implement a comprehensive interpretation of the material, composition, and form manifested and entangled within the idea of multifunctionality. The object is to be operated as a whole with an infinite scale in multiple directions: infinite in size, infinite in combination, infinite in detail, and infinite in function.
Smokestack Symbiosis Skyscraper Purifies Air
Xuekui Liu, Yashu Chen, Liyu Ai, Hao Wang, Jialu Xu (China)
Providing energy and materials, the Symbiosis skyscraper is attached to the chimney, which can also absorb harmful substances. In the beginning, the Symbiosis Skyscraper only needed a 3D printing ring, and the printing materials were completely provided by burning waste and plant fibers, starting from the bottom of the smokestack and spiraling up and printing around. With the growth of Symbiosis Skyscrapers, its ability to absorb harmful substances produced by smokestacks has continued to increase, reducing smokestack emissions. When it reaches its final form, the factory smokestack will no longer emit harmful substances and achieve “carbon neutral”.
Inner Skyscraper As Symbol Of Cultural Strength
Xiaoguang Chen, Jinting Sui, Xufeng Tai, Xiaotong Ma, Bai Lig (China)
We take the unfinished buildings, the product of urban sprawl as the carrier, Through modular customization, lightweight recyclable materials are assembled in factories into boxes of varying sizes，and implant the personalized space with culture as the theme that meets the needs of contemporary society. Each box records the cultural changes of the city, and the building continues to grow with people’s more importance attention to culture. Through the reuse of the unfinished buildings in the city, this project solves the problem of resource waste caused by developers’ wrong judgment of future urban construction.
Urban Parasitic System: Hanging Programmatic Spaces Between Skyscrapers
Shuaijie Li, Yueming Lin, Qian’er Pu, Jiajing Wang, Jinda Liu (China)
Urban Parasitic System proposes using the existing space in the city center to provide a livable possibility for the low and medium economic groups parasitic in the megacities. This design chose to hang various architectural spaces between the buildings as the main concept of the design. The existing high-density city is improved by “parasitizing” the design space on the existing skyscraper space.