Inspiring Vision: Gardens by the Bay


"Massive Change is not about the world of design; it's about the design of the world." – Bruce Mau

The Gardens by the Bay is a nature park spanning 250 acres in Singapore. It was part of the nation's plan to transform its "Garden City" into a "City in a Garden" to raise the quality of life by enhancing greenery in the city. The design firms behind this epic project, WilkinsonEyre and Grant Associates, definitely lived up to the vision. The expansive park is full of remarkable architectural and environmental inspiration. The highlights for me are Supertrees, 18 tree-like structures that dominate the Gardens' landscape with heights that range between 82-160 feet. They are vertical gardens that have multiple functions, including planting, shading, and working as environmental engines for the gardens.

The Supertrees are home to exotic ferns, vines, orchids, and a vast collection of bromeliads. They are equipped with environmental technologies that mimic the ecological function of trees. For example, photovoltaic cells harness solar energy to power the lighting system. In addition, the Supertrees collect rainwater for use in irrigation and fountain displays, and their air intake and exhaust functions as part of the conservatories' cooling systems. Truly amazing!

When I think about the Gardens by the Bay, I think about what is possible when we harness our imagination to create something that can transform not just ourselves but also our environment.


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