Jul 29, 2015 by


Basically, a true secret garden for the 21st century.

“I don’t divide architecture, landscape and gardening; to me they are one,” Mexican architect Luis Barragan once said. We doubt, however, that even Barragan could possibly have predicted his poetic words would one day manifest themselves so literally.

Poland-based urban architecture collective BOMP has crafted a futuristic vision for the next generation of skyscrapers, one that merges the classic symbol of urban power with the boundless forces of nature. Architects Ewa Odyjas, Agnieszka Morga, Konrad Basan and Jakub Pudo are the minds behind ESSENCE, a skyscraper comprised of 11 natural landscapes including the likes of a desert, a jungle and a glacier. The bold concept recently took home first prize at eVolo’s 2015 Skyscraper Competition, a contest based on radical reimaginings of the traditional skyscraper.

“Away from everyday routines, in a city center, a secret garden as a building combining both: an architecture and a nature is proposed,” BOMP explained in a press statement. “The main goal of the project is to position non-architectural phenomena in a dense, urban fabric by using the building as a neutral background.”

Basically, a true secret garden for the 21st century, ESSENCE will house a mysterious natural oasis in the midst of urban bustle. The structure will feature its 11 different natural atmospheres in one vertical tower: a glacier, mountain, grasslands, river, waterfall, cave, desert, steppe, swamp, jungle and ocean. The various natural phenomena will trigger not only a visual response from visitors, but acoustic, thermal, olfactory and kinesthetic reactions as well.

Firstly, we thought of an adventure, but not only this,” BOMP’s Jakub Pudo explained to The Creators Project. “Imagine all the senses attracted and stimulated by the elements contained in the spaces. The overlapped landscapes combined into variable sequences could play a role of educational routes representing some significant moments in history.”

ESSENCE will be 2,066 feet tall, divided into 11 distinct section The building will feature three levels containing technical facilities able to control all the demanded conditions necessary for the particular climates and conditions of the various landscapes.

The submitted vision would not feature the assistance of virtual reality; although the landscapes may be partially artificial, there is nothing illusory about them. “We proposed artificial landscapes, but composed from natural elements, including living ecosystems,” Pudo continued. “To support the conditions we introduced some levels only for technical facilities. They divide the skyscraper into parts but they do not interfere with the main program.”

See more details in BOMP’s plans below:

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