this concept design by vincent callebaut attempts to reclaim and reuse the urban environment in the city of angers, france. from first blush, it seems more like a greenhouse than an urban building, with vegetation drooping from the nina floors, but even this definition doesn’t fully explain this unusual building. it’s hard to put a title on it. on one hand, it’s meant to offer collaborative working style office spaces, on the other, it has various restaurants and space for apartments, all fused together with these intricate series of garden balconies. 

vincent callebaut arboricole
all images courtesy of vincent callebaut architectures

 

 

the design was part of ‘imagine angers’, a competition that called innovative proposals to transform the western french city. vincent callebaut was passionate to undertake a project in ‘europe’s plant capital’ and devised this dynamic concept, which, in many ways, epitomizes his hopes for the city — and perhaps the urban landscape as a whole. to develop the scheme, callebaut closely collaborated with bouygues immobilier, a french real estate developer, along with the landscape firm sempervirens, who was assisted by the INRA (french national institute of agricultural research).

vincent callebaut arboricole

 

 

the architect explains that: ‘living in an apartment at the heart of a vertical nourishing forest reminds us of our childhood dream. the dream of building tree huts to live better in symbiosis with ecosystems.’ this project is all about life, dynamism and reuse. the project named ‘arboricole’ is only conceptual, but would occupy 9,400 sqm on the corner plot and rise up, filling the sky with vegetation and greenery in the warm months. the ground floor includes many public spaces, such as a concert hall and various bars and restaurants. above, the second floor is conceived as a business incubator dedicated to cultural projects.

vincent callebaut arboricole

 

 

the designers insisted that the building catered to younger generations (specifically those aged 25-35), for whom notions of urban life is ever developing. consequently, an inn with 90 studio and one-bedroom units offers pleasant temporary accommodation. 50 two- to four-bedroom apartments are found above, providing connected, adaptable, and adjustable housing. on the roof, in-keeping with the projects mission of ecological responsibility, the building is topped off with solar panels. vincent callebaut aims to promote: intergenerational and transcultural diversity, flexibility and reversibility of spaces and uses, friendliness, better living together and integration of hanging gardens, all together they culminate into this design.’ 

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

vincent callebaut arboricole

 

 

project info:

 

 

international competition: finalist of ‘imagine angers’, organized by christophe béchu, mayor of angers
real estate developer: bouygues immobilier
lead architectural consultant: vincent callebaut architectures, paris
program: 50 vegetated, adaptable, and experimental apartments; a next-generation hotel residence; bar, beer brewery, and concert hall: a cultural nursery for the development of artistic projects; a gourmet rooftop restaurant
floor area: 9,400 sqm (101,180 sq. ft.)
environmental technical studies office: elan
structure and fluids technical studies office: setec bâtiment
landscaper: sempervirens, assisted by the INRA (french national institute of agricultural research)
partners: eisox, making tomorrow
artist: collectif blast

  • Wow, that’s how you can create a whole wood in the cities. Brilliant idea!

    P de Winter says:

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