A range of projects featuring water not just as a theme, but a major design element... very disparate in scale and application, but with that common hydrological thread. For starters, one of the typologies of green roofs, discussed previously on L+U, is the concept of 'blue roofs' - which use water to provide cooling atop building structures. A couple of amazing examples of this follow. First, the whimsical version of this is via Treehugger - of some art installations to creat 'Psycho Buildings' one of which includes a rooftop 'lake' replete with boats:
Some text via Treehugger: "The outside projects include an outdoor lake, created on top of the roof of the museum (pictured). Visitors can line up to take a little row boat ride in this newly made waterway in the sky, with the London Eye and Houses of Parliament in the distance. The water seems to flow over the side of the building. The floating dock for the odd little boats was made from reclaimed timber and junk-store furniture. The handles of the oars came from legs of old chairs with brass castors."
A more elegant version is the Tanatoria Municipal, by Jordi Badia /Josep Val in León, Spain is a stunning example of perhaps not exactly a 'blue roof' in the traditional sense, but a very cool one nonetheless...
:: images via Arch Daily
From Arch Daily: "A completely buried construction, it eludes its volume and its signification in order to camouflage itself in the interstices of a too-close residential area.A sheet of water by way of a roof constitutes the single facade, reflecting León’s sky like an allegory of death. All that emerges from the water are mysterious fingers in search of light for prayer."
:: images via Arch Daily
A few projects that propose floating architecture, reminiscent of the Dutch and their concept of 'amphibious architecture'... starting with a vision of New Orleans via Inhabitat: "Here’s an approach that endeavors to ride the river rather than stem it’s course. Harvard Graduate School of Design students Kiduck Kim and Christian Stayner have conceived of a Floating City that will “rise safely in an Archimedean liquid landscape.”
:: image via Inhabitat
Next - some literal amphibious development - a water-based development via World Architecture News - Waterkwekerij (Water Nursery) in Alkmaar, Netherlands...
:: images via WAN
A third version, via Inhabitat: "A set of zero-carbon floating buildings has been chosen by RIBA as the winning design for the visitor center at the new Brockholes Wetland and Woodland Nature Reserve in Preston, northern England. Nicknamed ‘A Floating World’... Built on an island of floating pontoons over a former 67-acre gravel pit, visitors are reassured with the guarantee of ‘unlimited flood protection’. The connection they experience with nature is greater through close proximity of the café, shop, gallery, education areas, and meeting rooms to the reeds and wildlife of the surrounding wetland environment."
:: images via Inhabitat
Following up this amphibious theme, is the idea of water walls which captures the concept of defining architectural spaces by streaming water vertically along the building perimeter. Via BDonline, the "...MIT building with walls made entirely of water will go on display ... at the Zaragoza World Expo in northern Spain, the theme of which is water and sustainable development." That's hot - and cool...
:: images via BDonline