With the world population said to swell 9.56 billion in 2050 skyscrapers are becoming an increasingly vital stimulus to the sustainability of cities.
One day with the right Technology they may even keep our species from extinction. Here are 6 entries that captivated our imagination.
1. Drone Docking Skyscrapers
In the future the skies of megacities will be filled with drones serving all manner of functions. Most, if not all of them, will be completely autonomous, meaning they won’t need to return to a human at the end of their flight in order to
prepare for the next one. However, they will need a place to rest and charge that is both efficient and accessible. The Hive images imagines a towering drone docking structure in the center of Midtown Manhattan to meet these needs. To sustain such hordes, city skies would need to be rezoned to support vertical highways on which drones can travel.
2. Data Storing Skyscrapers
In their entry to eVole’s competition, the designers of the data skyscraper noted that Global IP traffic will cross the zettabyte threshold at the end of 2016, and double to two zeta bytes by the end of 2019. They foresee a future where data storage centers must be dramatically re-engineered to accommodate the world’s rising appetite for the web. Data skyscrapers would likely be built in places like Iceland, wear surplus renewable energy and a cool climate provide the perfect environment for them to be run efficiently.
3. Air Filtering Skyscrapers
The next skyscraper is a radical solution to the growing problem of polluted megacities in the developing world. The Air-Stalagmite features an immense vacuum at its base which sucks polluted air into the building and funnels it up to a collection of air filters.
The skyscraper would ‘breathe out’ clean ear while using the leftover particles as building materials to fuel its growth. The Air-Stalagmite’s designer’s believe they would serve both as a symbol and an acknowledgement of the pollution problems in the city surrounding it.
4. Weather Modifying Skyscrapers
As climate change tightens its grip on our planet, the days continue to get hotter, and the draught continue to last longer in the distant future. weather modification may be the only means by which to generate reliable rainfall. This skyscraper, called Cloud Craft, takes advantage of cloud seeding – a modification practice that has been around for decades. It involves shooting silver iodide into clouds, which provides additional nuclei for moisture to collect around. These towers might be placed on the coast of California, for example, where lone marine layer clouds ideal for seeding pass through.
5. Energy Producing Skyscrapers
For cities like New York that are already packed with skyscrapers, it may not be economical (or even feasible) to tear down old ones in order to build new ones. South Korean designers Soomin Kim and Seo-Hyun-Oh imagine a future where crumbling buildings can be reborn anew. In this rendering, the Empire State Building is covered in a loose ‘skin’ made of solar panels, which would provide all the energy necessary for the building to function. Excess energy could then be used to facilitate a warm and damp environment around the structure that would allow for plant life to flourish. The plants. in-turn would combat greenhouse emissions.
6. Vertical Farming Skyscrapers
The last entry to the list is designed for the super distant future when our species is approaching extinction on Earth. By this point nature will have long reclaimed the lands we once used for cities and towns. The last remnants of humanity will congregate in open air skyscrapers that are built specifically for food security. Over time, they will grow into towering gardens of Eden which play host to a variety of fruits, vegetables and grains. Skyscrapers will serve as a reminder that man must return to nature and respect it in order to carry on the species.