Since 2006, eVolo Magazine has held an annual competition for innovative skyscraper design that asks young architects to create work that embraces “the use of new technologies, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations,” as well as “studies on globalization, flexibility, adaptability, and the digital revolution.” Since real world constraints like budgets and the actual construction process are a non-issue, the results are always interesting, and quite often, look like something straight out of a sci-fi novel. Click through to see which designs managed to win this year’s top honors, from a mountain-sized water cooler to a trash tower that generates enough electricity to help power the surrounding city.
Himalaya Water Tower by Zhi Zheng, Hongchuan Zhao, and Dongbai Song – China
This first place winning design is for a skyscraper “located high in the mountain range that serves to store water and helps regulate its dispersal to the land below as the mountains’ natural supplies dry up.”
Mountain Band-Aid by Yiting Shen, Nanjue Wang, Ji Xia, and Zihan Wang – China
A response to the effects of industrialization and mining on the region, this second place winner “seeks to simultaneously restore the displaced Hmong mountain people to their homes and work as it restores the mountain ecology of the Yunnan mountain range.”
The Monument of Civilization by Lin Yu-Ta and Anne Schmidt – Taiwan
Coming in third place, we have a proposal that suggests “locating trash vertically in a tower and using the energy generated from its decomposition to help power the surrounding city.” Not only would this vertical landfill serve a practical purpose, it would also be a nice visual reminder of how much waste we create as a society. In this case, the smaller the skyscraper, the better off we all are.