Can A Skyscraper Fight Poverty & Feed the World?
Lately skyscrapers have become more than just tall structures. In previous articles we've covered skyscrapers that resembled vertical forests and had the capability of eating smog. Now, designers Pawel Lipinkski and Mateusz Frankowski have considered pushing the boundaries again on what a skyscraper can be and are presenting them as poverty solving entities.
The Mashambas Skyscraper name derives from the Swahili word for cultivated land. The designers aim to use this skyscraper as a means to introduce a "green revolution" to impoverished small farmers in sub-Saharan Africa. The building will be split into multiple parts: an education center for growing crops, hosting markets, and training on agricultural techniques.
The multipurpose building placed first in the 2017 eVolo Skyscraper Competition. Contributing to the win is the fact that this simple modular design can be easily assembled, disassembled, and transported. Essentially the arched modules stack together (as shown above) to make the structure into a high-rise.
Since the building is proposed for a desolate area, most building and agricultural supplies would be transported to the area via drones. The drones would also then deliver surplus food to individuals that are in most need and harder to reach areas.
The ultimate goal for the building is to establish the farming community. So once the local community becomes self-sufficient, the building can relocate to other places that need similar assistance to get started.
"Mashambas is a movable educational center, which emerges in the poorest areas of the continent, it provides education, training on agricultural techniques, cheap fertilizers, and modern tools; it also creates a local trading area, which maximizes profits from harvest sales. Today hunger and poverty may be only African matter, but the world’s population will likely reach nine billion by 2050, scientists warn that this would result in global food shortage. Africa’s fertile farmland could not only feed its own growing population, it could also feed the whole world.”
While the Mashambas Skyscraper won first place in the 2017 eVolvo competition, official plans for the build of the skyscraper have yet to be released. We can, however, anticipate more designs such as this to unfold on the horizon as sustainable architecture continues to rise.