‘head over clouds’ by roofscapes studio is a 1:50 model based on climate simulations

 

roofscapes studio is a startup launched in 2020 by three french students in architecture and real estate development at the massachusetts institute of technology (MIT) in boston. their goal is to transform pitched roofs in dense urban centers by topping them with plant-covered platforms, offering new green outdoor spaces that mitigate the urban heat island effect building by building. in 2021, roofscapes was selected to present its work at the 2021 seoul biennale of architecture and urbanism, which focused on the resilience of cities.

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 1
all images © roofscapes studio

 

 

on that occasion, roofscapes studio (see more here) developed a large 1:50 scale model showcasing its vision for tactical urbanism over the roofs of dense european neighborhoods. based on climate simulations run at MIT (see more here), temperatures will nullify, 25 years from now, natural ventilation in places like milan, budapest, or paris — leaving the urban fabric utterly exposed to direct solar radiations. the studio’s proposal for green and accessible roofs directly addresses these issues. 

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 2

 

 

envisioning a mass-customized and modular green roof system that offers accessible & ecological spaces

 

the proposal would be implemented through a mass-customized modular green roof system using lightweight engineered timber, and a new layer of organic material like soil and plants, that can be deployed without replacing the existing pitched roofs. this approach optimizes the building’s energy performance by preventing the top from overheating. ‘at the scale of the city, the network of green roofs provides anchors to remedy biodiversity loss, participates in refreshing the air through evapotranspiration, and improves water retention during storms,’ comments roofscapes. 

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 3

 

 

furthermore, the team resorted to GIS data to assess potential sites matching local zoning requirements to implement roof decks, properly. the design of each tactical intervention is then informed by surveying untapped rooftops with 3D-scanning drones. prefabricated modules are subsequently deployed over existing pitched roofs to form an accessible space for people, plants, animals, and other living beings. from a structural perspective, the new surface loads are transferred to the building’s masonry walls, which were often over-dimensioned in the case of pre-WW2 buildings.

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 5

 

 

the team’s large scale model was precisely fabricated to be shipped to seoul. it features light materials like wood and paper together with foldable components for easy transport and disassembly after the closing of the 2021 seoul biennale (see more here), the pavilion was reinstalled at the paris climate academy, where it is still exhibited today to support discussions around the contribution of rooftops towards urban resilience with local officials and young students. 

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 6

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 7

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 9

head in the clouds a vision for resilient cities at the seoul biennale by roofscapes studio 10

 

 

 

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roofscapes envisions green roof network to combat heat island effect in european cities
 
roofscapes envisions green roof network to combat heat island effect in european cities
 
roofscapes envisions green roof network to combat heat island effect in european cities
 
roofscapes envisions green roof network to combat heat island effect in european cities
 

project info:

 


name: head in the clouds

architecture: roofscapes studio
presented at:  2021 seoul biennale of architecture and urbanism 

 

 

 

designboom has received this project from our DIY submissions feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

editedby: lea zeitoun | designboom