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In the post, Tomo has introduced us the vertical garden city in Tokyo. He mentions that sustainability has become a significant factor applied in urban design. In order to develop the city as a sustainable city, Tokyo government has tried to design the city as a green city first. However, due to the large population density and the existing buildings in Tokyo, it has not enough space for the government to do the green space. Therefore, the government has find a new way to make the city green by design the garden vertically on the buildings to make Tokyo as a green city vertically.

Figure 1. Tokyo Vertical Green Garden city diagram. Source: https://www.mori.co.jp/en/company/urban_design/vgc.html.

The vertical green city could be an ideal way for the city with a large population and limited public space, not only because it could save space by effectively utilize the sky, but also incorporate a variety of urban functions such into the three-dimensional multilayered manner. Cities in China have a very similar situation with Tokyo, especially for those megacities. For example in Beijing, a capital city which is same as Tokyo in Japan, with lower population density (13,000 per square mile in 2017) compared to Tokyo (11,500 per square mile in 2017), but the traffic issue and air pollution problem are much worse than Tokyo (Wendell Cox Statistics, 2017).

Here is a video link shows the environment problems in Beijing: http://time.com/4711992/beijing-china-hebei-smog-greenbelt/

Figure 2. Beijing as a green city. Source:https://www.smartcitiesdive.com/ex/sustainablecitiescollective/city-was-sea-green/19246/

Beijing, a city has already been planned with a large green space, could partly be a garden city theoretically (Withrow, 2013), but still has significant environmental issues which are more serious in nowadays. As the capital city, Beijing has already put a lot of money to solve the environmental problem, especially the worse haze in recent years (Kilpetrick, 2017). The vertical garden city could be difficult to be applied in Beijing, due to the different urban planning policies from Tokyo. Beijing government has found other ways to solve the environmental problems. One of them is to design a “Green Necklace” in surrounding provinces and cities (Kilpetrick, 2017). The northern province Hebei has been province pledged to ramp up greening efforts in the areas surrounding Beijing, in a bid to solve the Chinese capital’s infamous pollution problem. Definitely, it will meet a lot of challenges for both Beijing and Hebei, “Green Necklace” could be a way to “green” the city.

 

References:

Wendell Cox Statistics, (2017). The 37 Megacities and Largest Cities: Demographia World Urban Areas: 2017. Online Available: http://www.newgeography.com/content/005593-the-largest-cities-demographia-world-urban-areas-2017.

Withrow, J. (2013). Beijing – a green city? Smart City DIVA, Online Available: https://www.smartcitiesdive.com/ex/sustainablecitiescollective/city-was-sea-green/19246/.

Kilpetrick, R. (2017). Beijing Hopes a ‘Green Necklace’ Will Help Solve the Chinese Capital’s Smog Woes, Time Online Press, Online Available: http://time.com/4711992/beijing-china-hebei-smog-greenbelt/.

 

 

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School of Architecture
Planning and Landscape
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tyne and Wear, NE1 7RU

Tel: 0191 208 6509

Email: nicola.rutherford@ncl.ac.uk


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