Have you ever heard of the term arcology? Developed by Italian architect Paolo Soleri, it defines an increasingly popular design idea: architecture and ecology are combined into one integrated design. Vincent Callebaut Architectures’ Nautilus Eco-Resort perfectly describes the possibilities of this environmental design idea.
“In a world that is shrinking, the Nautilus Eco-Resort project wants to extend the field of action of a triple-zero eco-tourism: zero-emission, zero-waste, zero poverty,” explains architect Vincent Callebaut. “Discover the world without distorting it. Revitalize ecosystems instead of impoverishing and polluting them. Actively participate in the restoration of cultural heritage.”
This unique eco-tourism development is made up of a few design elements that mimic natural processes and forms, roughly following the gesture of the golden ratio. Small towers are placed in three branches with views looking out towards the landscape and turned to best access sunlight throughout the day. Pavilions representing petals and corals adorn the in-between areas and provide a dedicated space for scientists to work with marine life to improve biodiversity. At the center of the lagoon, an origami mountain contains laboratories and swimming areas in the hope to encourage tourists and scientists to interact.
Massive green shells act as small hotels with exhibitions focused on the local climate and environmental issues. The concept is especially relevant to the Philippines because it faces many environmental challenges relating to over-fishing, erratic weather, and more of the climate-related developments facing similar parts of the world. According to the architects, this project imagines how designers respond to these problems and is “resolutely committed to the concept of environmental resistance, militating for a new social system that is concerned about human and planetary health.”
If you are interested in radical ideas about arcology and other ways architects can adapt to our changing planet, Vincent Callebaut Architectures has plenty of projects that will keep you inspired. Be sure to check out our coverage of their past projects, including a VR experience called Pollinator Park, the beautiful Rainbow Tree (also designed for the Philippines), and this twisting tower for Taipei.