The “Garden of the Four Seasons” is, or rather, will be a covered garden where the four seasons will coexist at all times of year: spring, summer, autumn and winter. The project was designed by Carlo Ratti Associati for Milan’s Citylife district, which boasts projects by other world-famous architects including Zaha Hadid, Daniel Liebeskind and Arata Isozaki. The public will be able to visit the garden via a route that follows the natural life cycle of plants from spring to winter. The project, designed to encourage city-dwellers to be more aware of the cycles of nature, will cover a 2500 sqm area in the new Citylife park.
The Garden of the Four Seasons will employ a new zero energy consumption climate control system. Solar energy will be collected by a series of photovoltaic cells covering the clear EFTE membrane over the garden. A series of heat exchangers will allow solar energy to cool down the winter area and heat up the summer area; all this will be managed by a sophisticated system of sensors controlling and monitoring environmental conditions, and particularly the two main components that contribute to plant growth: light and heat. Digital sensors will also measure other parameters necessary for plant growth, such as moisture and nutrients, making them visible in real time via "tweets" from the plants themselves.
Design: Carlo Ratti Associati www.carloratti.com
Location: Milan, Italy
Images: Carlo Ratti Associati