Italian architect Stefano Boeri is bringing his vertical forest concept to Africa with three cube-shaped apartments in Egypt. The three, seven-story buildings will be located just east of Cairo in the country's New Administrative Capital. The beautifully designed architectural trio will bring a green touch to the area, while primarily housing government departments and foreign embassies.
Boeri's architecture studio, which has vertical forest projects in nearly every continent, collaborated with Egyptian designer Shimaa Shalash and Italian landscape architect Laura Gatti on the project. Lush greenery will sprawl out on terraces across the three buildings. Boeri estimates that 350 trees and 14,000 shrubs of over 100 species will be used in the project, contributing significantly to the area's air quality.
As with any of these ambitious vertical gardens, meticulous planning is necessary. Each terrace is expected to have plants that are selected according to the local climate. There will also be careful consideration of different blooming seasons and plant heights. Aesthetics and environmental considerations come together to create the perfect landscape. As an added bonus, the plant life will not only provide shade, but should also absorb an estimated seven tons of carbon dioxide and produce about eight tons of oxygen per year.
Construction on the cubes, which measure 900 square meters (about 9,688 square feet), will begin in 2020. The aim is to finish the project in 2022 with one cube used as a hotel, while the other two will remain residential. The cubes are part of a larger vision Boeri has for a more environmentally friendly Cairo. Along with architect Francesca Cesa Bianchi, he announced the “Greener Cairo” initiative, which calls for the transformation of regular roofs into green roofs, the installation of a green corridor that would run through the city, and greening flat vertical surfaces.