While living in an urban environment has many benefits, you're often subject to noise, pollution, and lack of green space. This five-storey apartment building by Luciano Pia minimizes these disadvantages by cloaking the structure in a beautiful potted forest. Located in Turin, Italy, the facade also features silhouetted metal trees that foster the look and feel of a magnificent tree house.
There are 150 trees scattered along the outside of the residential building, and they absorb nearly 200,000 liters of carbon dioxide an hour. So, the lush greenery is not only aesthetically pleasing, but its natural absorption helps to eliminate harmful pollutants (such as car exhaust) as well as disruptive outside noise. Its presence also benefits the inside of the building, too. The plants' full leaves in the spring and summer months mean that they help to block out the harsh sun. When they're leafless in the winter, however, they bring in much-needed light to warm up the building.
This complex houses 63 units that each have terraces to hold the vegetation. In addition to the plants on the balconies, there are also gardens on the roof that further the idea of a grown up's tree house. Though its inspiration comes from a childlike place, Pia's design has fantastic real-world benefits for its tenants.