The Vertical Forest

First we had vertical farms, and now….vertical forests! The Forest Futures scanning team found the following scanning hit: Forest in the sky: Residential tower blocks covered in 800 trees and 15,000 plants help combat global warming in Milan. The Boeri Studio in Milan Italy designed the project to help combat global warming and pollution. The towers, in Central Milan, host more than 800 trees – a sample image below is from the author’s site (the article has additional images).

This innovation adds a new dimension to the idea of urban forestry by integrating the forest more deeply into the fiber of the city. Given that more than 50% of the world — and more than 80% of the US – is now urban, it is a huge opportunity to bring forestry more front-and-center in daily life. Indeed, data suggests fewer folks are going to nature, thus bringing nature to the people may be an effective way to raise awareness about the critical important of forests in combating climate change by acting as CO2 sinks.

The Boeri website notes the following additional benefits: (1) increases biodiversity (2)  helps to build a micro-climate and to improve air quality (2) is an anti-sprawl measure which aims to control and reduce urban expansion (4) aiding understanding architectural projects and garden system, and (4) it’s a landmark in the city. – Andy Hines

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