PhD project within Smart City & Smart Buildings
University College London, the Bartlett School of Architecture
PUTTING PLANTS INTO BUILDINGS – ENTERING THE LIMINAL REALM
With more than half the world’s population now residing in urban environments, the city reaches for the skies and expands into the surrounding countryside. Making it the fastest expanding habitat, and resulting in an apparent disconnect of its inhabitants and the natural environment at large. This disconnect has been linked to wellbeing indicators, and has been identified as the world’s greatest environmental threat. These developments leads to a ‘greening’ of cities in which natural elements become features of the urban environment.
This project questions the prevalent approach and employs a research by design methodology identifying a different point of reconnection. Situated at the intersection of plants, perception and photonics, the application of photoluminescent solar concentrators (LSCs) is examined for its particular optical properties to enable plant growth in interior non-growth environments. Considering the sealed shell of the building body not as a mere container of plants, but as an interface for what takes place in the space between the building and the nature inside.