Collapsible Skyscraper for Disaster Zones Wins Design Competition
A foldable skyscraper concept has just been named the winner of 2018’s eVolo Skyscrapper Competition. Designed by Polish architects Damian Granosik, Jakub Kulisa, and Piotr Pańczyk, the Skyshelter.zip concept would be delivered by helicopter to offer relief in remote disaster zones.
The eVolo Skyscraper Competition is an annual award which recognises ‘visionary ideas- projects 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.’
This year’s winner, the collapsible Skyshelter.zip tower, is designed to be packed into a box only as wide as the building’s base, so it can be suspended under military helicopters. The idea is that this would help aid workers access remote locations that trucks might not be able to reach if roads become inaccessible.
Once on site, the base would be anchored in place and a ‘load-bearing helium balloon’ would be inserted to rapidly erect the tower. Accordion-style fabric panels are used to create the external and internal walls which would spread out as the balloon rises.
Each floor in the skyscraper is made from lightweight 3D-printed slabs which would be pulled upwards by structural steel wires attached to the balloon. These wires would be strong enough to resist strong storms. Ingeniously, the amount of gas poured into the balloon can control the number of floors that unfold, depending on the scale needed.
Inside, the pop-up skyscraper could host numerous spaces, including reception areas, first aid bays, temporary housing, safe and dry storage space, and even a “vertical farm that uses soil gathered during anchoring.” There would also be solar panels embedded into the structure and a hollow centre can collect and filter rainwater.
The designers of Skyshelter.zip say that the structure would take up to 30 times less room than traditional tents or containers used in disaster relief. This would reduce the clean-up operation needed to clear the ground in an area that’s been hit by the likes of hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. Head over to the eVolo Website for more details.
In other design news, take a look at the incredible ‘Waterfall’ aquatics centre set to be built on Copenhagen Harbour.