Plan for ultra-green eco-city in South Korea

Posted on 1:01 PM by Sameer Shah

The municipality of Gwanggyo, south of the capital Seoul, invited architects to compete for the chance to build a green development at the core of a new town that will eventually house 77,000 people.

The design competition was won by the Dutch firm MVRDV, with a project whose main centre is supposed to look like a series of overgrown hillsides.

This effect is achieved by the simple use of box hedges grown on terraces built around each floor of the skyscrapers.

They are supposed to benefit the environment by improving ventilation and reducing energy and water wastage.

Investment for the project will come from the Korean conglomerate Daewoo while the British engineering firm Arup will also be involved.

If it is given the final go-ahead, it may make up for Arup's disappointment in getting a much-praised "eco-city" near Shanghai off the ground in neighbouring China.

Despite a high-profile launch three years ago, building at Dongtan, an hour's drive outside China's financial capital, has yet to start.

While costs and timings are still being discussed, the developers hope the South Korean project will be completed in 2011.

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