Now there’s green, there’s Green, there’s even GREEN, and there’s GREEEEEN!!!
This development sits firmly within the latter context. Its an ambitious residential development in Cairo that is posed to be “an iconic sustainable building that would express the future of the city…”
Designed by Paris based Vincent Callebaut Architectures in conjunction with local Egyptian firms, K&A Design as well as Injaz Development, the project is a supremely sustainable scheme, blending 1,000 apartments with offices and retail components, all targeting LEED Gold.
Titled “The Gate” the development incorporates nine sculptural ‘Megatrees’ across the horizontal surface of the building drawing the roof system down to the basement level, in a bid to aid natural ventilation within the ground level patios and an inner street, called ‘The Boulevard’ which acts as a spine for the development connecting the residents in a lively, shaded community.
Four Levels of underground parking, one level of supermarkets and retail outlets, three levels of commercial space all topped by nine levels of residencies make up the bulk of the building. The residential levels are planned to carry facade of horizontal low-e glass and polished white stonesculpted into a series of ‘U’ shaped forms which host the aforementioned ‘Megatrees’. Solar Panels and Solar Heating Tubes also feature in the roof system, which the architects have designed to be a fifth facade of sorts, creating a common playground for residents brought to life with features like infinity pools, sports facilities, orchards and food gardens all within the dense vertical ecosystem.
This is a Bold approach blending a plethora of green features, eight of which are key to its aim for LEED Gold status. We have;
1. Megatrees – sitting in the middle of each green patio
2. A passive geothermal cooling system – integrated along each core
3. solar panels – on the roof, east and west facades
4. solar heating tubes – on the roof as well
5. wind turbines – along the axial spine
6. rooftop food gardens
7. living walls – that line the inner face of the nine ‘Megatrees’
8. Recyclable/Recycled Furniture.
Again I say, a very Bold approach that is reminiscent of scenes from starwars or some other futuristic sci-fi rendition. The Gate takes sustainability to the maximum, not sparing any idea or extent but going all in, with a strong sense of creativity and audacious engineering. I sincerely look forward to seeing this rise and become a reality just as they are depicted in the renderings.