Daily Mail

Los Angeles-Dramatic new designs for skyscrapers ranging from a huge ‘eco-tower; in the Amazon rainforest to a design with a movable roof based on a Koreen home have been revealed as part of a design contest. The eVolo Magazine 2014 Skyscraper Competition shows off a range of unique designs, including a desert tower made from sand. It also includes a ‘city in the sky’ for Detroit, and a Sky Village for Los Angeles. eVolo Magazine received 525 projects from 43 countries in all continents.

The Jury, formed by leaders of the architecture and design fields selected 3 winners and 20 honorable mentions.

One of the winners, The Rainforest Guardian Skyscraper, consists of a water tower, a forest fire station, a weather station, and scientific research and education laboratories.

It stands still at the Amazon’s frontier, preventing fires effectively by capturing rainwater in the rainy season and irrigating the land in the dry season.

The lotus-shaped water tower is capable of capturing rainwater directly.

The collected water is filtered and stored in spare reservoirs. Using capillarity combined with active energy, the aerial roots with a distinct sponge-structure can absorb and store the excess water without disturbing the Amazon’s ecosystem. In the case of fire, firefighters fly to the scene and extinguish the fire with the collected water. 

In addition, the Guardian Skyscraper provides special scientific research laboratories for scientists to monitor the climate change and the ecosystem stability.  The laboratories also act as exhibition spaces for tourists to create environmental awareness.

First place was awarded to Yong Ju Lee from the United States for his project ‘Vernacular Versatility’.

The proposal reinterprets traditional Korean architecture in a contemporary mixed-use high-rise.

Hanok is the named used to describe a traditional Korean house.

The curved edge of the roof can be adjusted to control the amount of sunlight entering the house while the core structural element is a wooden connection named Gagu.

The Gagu is located below the main roof system where the column meets the beam and girder and it is fastened without the need of any additional parts such as nails – this connection is one of the main aesthetic characteristics of traditional Korean architecture.