Toronto Tree Tower By Chris Precht
The ‘Tree Tower Toronto’ should be seen as a catalyst for future residential buildings that are ‘more efficient to construct’ and ‘more ecological to our environment’ than common construction methods.
“Our cities are a assembly of steel, concrete and glass. If you walk through the city and suddenly see a tower made of wood and plants, it will create an interesting contrast. The warm, natural appearance of wood and the plants growing on its facade bring the building to life and that could be a model for environmental friendly developments and sustainable extensions of our urban landscape,” states Chris Precht, partner at penda.
The ‘Tree Tower Toronto’ is a joined effort of ‘penda’ as architects and Canadian CLT-consultancy ‘Tmber’ to envision a sustainable high-rise proposal in urban areas. The 18-storey tower will stand 62m high and will comprise 4500 sqm of residential areas and 550 sqm of public areas with a cafe, a children’s daycare-center and workshops for the neighboring community. Due to its natural appearance, the building shifts the usual relation from a ‘building to city’ relation to a ‘building to nature’ relation. The tower tries to establish a direct connection to nature with plants and its natural materiality.
Canada has a long tradition of wood construction and was one of the first countries in the world to change their building codes in order to use wood in vertical structures. Therefor Canada is a pioneer in adding high-rises made out of wood to their urban fabrics. As a promotion for sustainable developments, the Canadian government awards buildings that exceeds carbon footprint standards. Such credits can reach a 10-20% funding of the building cost and is a direct injection to green-light sustainable housing proposals and are an incentive for forward thinking developers.