Thanks to urban sprawl and auto & factory emissions, Milan is one of the most polluted cities in Italy. But Italian architect Stefano Boeri is greening up Milan with a “Vertical Forest.” The project took inspiration from traditional Italian towers covered in ivy. Boeri simply multiplied that effect on two soaring apartment towers. Can you imagine how these residential buildings that look like trees themselves could soon look like at apartment buildings throughout the world?

Click on the picture to see the photographs Boeri posted of the towers’ construction on his blog last month.

Scientists say it’ll actually improve the city atmosphere, and not just the skyline. According to Boeri, the diversity of the plants and their characteristics produce humidity, absorb carbon dioxide and dust particles, producing oxygen and protect from radiation and acoustic pollution, improving the quality of living spaces and saving energy. Plant irrigation will be produced to great extent through the filtering and reuse of the grey waters produced by the building. Additionally Aeolian and photovoltaic energy systems will contribute, together with the aforementioned microclimate to increase the degree of energetic self sufficiency of the two towers.

The lush vegetation will also encourage the presence of birds and insects within the miniature gardens. It will also balance out the city’s environmental damage, by creating a self-sufficient ecosystem. And with construction costing only five percent higher than that of a typical skyscraper, the concept of a vertical skyscraper is incredibly accessible for other cities facing similar plights.

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