People familiar with science fiction, futuristic architecture and innovative ideas for the future in general, won’t be surprised by Vincent Callebaut‘s approach to sustainable living or by his designs. Though the Belgian architect says that his detractors laughed at him and told him that he had created nothing more than a piece of science fiction.
However, Callebaut’s ideas have been taken under consideration by some and have attracted the attention of many. This is because we really do need a form of sustainable life, since natural resources are growing scarce and overpopulation is a pressing issue.
Most of Callebaut’s designs incorporate a mixture of both eco-friendly environments and basic domestic living. And, through these ideas, he’s managed to create a sort of innovation, making everyday tasks like domestic cleaning as eco-friendy as possible and offering people a sustainable way of life.
The most notable of all his projects, is the Dragonfly, which was exhibited at an international fair in China. This structure is essentially an enormous farmland, which expands in height, rather than width.
From the visual representations Callebaut has provided, we can see that there are multiple agricultural sectors, such as those for the development of eggs and dairy products, as well as rice fields, orchards and meadows. The design also shows that the farm is afloat on New York’s Roosevelt River and that half of its power supply comes from its own Darrieus wind turbines.
The space between the building’s “wings” acts as a trap for hot air, preserving it for heating during the cold seasons, while ventilation and plant transpiration are used for cooling during the warm seasons. All the plants shown growing on the exterior are used to filter rain water and to create a natural fertilizer, by mixing it with liquid waste from the farm itself.
While the Dragonfly is certainly a prominent concept, another important design he presented was that of the Farmscraper. This almost 400 meter tall structure resembles a neat stack of pebbles, all of which are connected via a central column. The building has a total of 111 floors and each is designed to work as both a domestic and business environment, while also being an eco-friendly farmland.
While the idea of mixed-use skyscrapers was first proposed by the architect Ken Yeang, Callebaut’s design combines the use of gardens, solar cells, wind turbines and a water system, which recycles waste water from both kitchens and bathrooms, taking the original idea to the next level and turning it into a sustainable environment.