Was the first time you got excited about architecture when you looked up at a building and it seemed impossibly high? Feeling extreme scale can be a powerful experience! Just how do human beings imagine and then actually make huge, vast, or tall things?
In the last century, skyscrapers became possible because of advancements in building material technologies such as reinforced concrete, steel, windows, and elevators. At the same time, cities grew in population and land became valuable, increasing pressure to build in the only place available: UP! Now, cities and their skylines are nearly synonymous and still a favorite topic of study in architecture.
As resources become scarcer in parts of the world, skyscrapers are also a topic of debate. Are they an efficient and healthy place for people to work and live? Can we afford the energy, water, and waste treatment they demand? And if the people are in the air, what happens at the ground?
Recent skyscraper proposals by architecture students and faculty explore new forms of structure that mimic biological systems, create undulating skins, and more — these buildings do more than simply stand up! Check out some of the creative projects from architecture schools that reflect the excitement and tackle the concerns about skyscraper design...
Image 1 > The social and spatial implications of the technological revolution of the internet, as applied to skyscrapers.
Image 2 & 3 > This project proposes a solution to the trash that floats through our oceans.
Image 4 > Hybridizing vault space and monumentality, a pollution filter as alternative for sustainable building typologies.
Image 5 & 6 > The design aims to harbor reconnections beyond just the occupants by creating environments that are self sustaining and equally accessible to all citizens of New York City.
Image 7 & 8 > Standing at 3,000ft, this design harnesses an excess of green energies from environments, while its large ‘wings’ provide infrastructure for human urban development, and legs bloom with farming biomes for plant and animal life.
Image 9 > A proposal to reconnect the urban context of Raleigh, NC to it's suburban counterpart, breaching socio-economic barriers.
Image 10 > Twin skyscrapers sheathed in a structural latticework to support various con-ex containers.