With the sort of recent Earth Hour festivities on 03.27.10 (how many of you took part?), sustainability continues to top the mind for many people and organizations around the world. New discoveries are prompting creative and practical solutions to many of the world’s problems. Recently, Polish firm H3AR has designed a water-harvesting skyscraper which would draw water from a newly discovered underwater lake in Darfur, Sudan, a city plagued by drought for many years. The project stems from a 2007 discovery by scientists at Boston University who identified the world’s 10th largest underwater lake located right underneath Darfur. Stretching 19,110 square miles underground, having access to this water would vastly change the lives of the inhabitants in Darfur.
H3AR’s Watertower project will consist of 3 towers built using dry clay bricks which will be manufactured locally, are a sustainable building material, and are tied to the local community. The towers will be able to give access to the available water through good design and effective water management. Inside the towers will be water pumps and a treatment plant. These pumps will take the water from the aquifer, pump it throughout the building to heat it and cool it, and store it within the core of the building itself. The building’s users would then have access to this water, which would be recycled by the treatment plant.
The baobab, or “upside down tree’ will be able to provide shade for the people of Darfur as well. The skyscrapers will work also as a hospital, a school, a food storage center, and most importantly, a water storage center for the people of Darfur.
While still a concept, I really do hope the completion of this project is not far away as it would greatly benefit the people of Darfur. What’s your take?
Images via ArchDaily