Inspiration blog:
7 creative ways of urban climate adaptation


Climate change is dominating our lives and this will become increasingly clear in the future. Therefore, climate control is one of the main themes to take into account in urban development these days. Climate adaptation is the process by which society adapts to climate change in order to limit the inconveniences. When shaping our built environment, art can meet with these challenges. In this blog, we show you 7 ways art and design offer solutions while brightening up the public space.

1. Kokkedal Climate Adaption – Schønerr, Denmark

Kokkedal is Denmark’s largest climate adaptation project, covering an area of 60ha. The region suffered severe flooding around 2011 and needed a solution. Today, this project contains multiple solutions for climate adaption and water methods. Rainwater is managed in a system on the surface, making it possible to follow its course from smaller basins onto the Usserød River. Above all, the interventions in this project are used for recreational means. This has always been a central goal of the project, making the area an attractive living environment.

Kokkedal Climate Adaption

2. Ballet Mécanique – Zurich, Switserland

This building by Manuel Herz is designed to adapt to the weather conditions. The facade consists of colorful, dynamic shutters that keep the sun and heat out of the building when needed, and serve as shading roofs when enjoying nice days on the balcony. The striking kinetic design sure is one of a kind and offers opportunities in extreme weather conditions.

Ballet Mécanique Manuel Herz

3. Watersquare Benthemplein – Rotterdam, The Netherlands

De Urbanisten created a multifunctional, climate adaptive public space in the city of Rotterdam. The square offers space in case of excessive rainfall. In total, the water square could take 1,7 million liters of water on a temporary basis. It is developed with the help of the surrounding schools, companies, and the youth theatre, church, and gym closeby. Also, the square is a recreational space for young people, going to school in this area. In the gutters, skaters have fun on dry days.

Benthemplein Rotterdam


4.Tainan Spring – Tainan, Taiwan

MVRDV designed this urban lagoon on a site in the city of Tainan that used to contain a shopping mall. As the plants in the masterplan grow, the intervention will become a green oasis in the urban environment. A jungle that reconnects the city with its nature and its waterfront, and serves as both a public square and an urban pool.

Tainan Spring MVRDV Taiwan

5. The Ring Riverpark – Seoul, South Korea

The Ring Riverpark is a public pool and entertainment project by 100architects. Located in Jamsil Hangang Park, on the banks of the Hang River in Seoul, the park connects the city to the passing water. The design by 100architects brings back the former glory of a 30-years-old swimming facility by renovating the swimming pools and offering a solution to revitalize the entire park as a public space, with foothills hovering over the river.

The Ring Riverpark 100Architects Seoul, South Korea

6. One Central Park: Vertical Garden – Sydney, Australia

With this building in downtown Sydney, architect Jean Nouvel and botanist Patrick Blanc collaborated on the tallest green walls in the world. One Central Park contains two residential towers on top of a five-story Central shopping center. The two towers of respectively 117 and 84 meters high contain over 500 apartments and 38 penthouse flats that have access to a sky garden. Next to the green facades that trap carbon dioxide, emit oxygen and provide energy-saving shade, this building stands out because of its large suspended heliostat system. This is a panel of mirrors that tracks sunlight and directs it down into the mass of the building, which improves the quality of high rise living.

One central park vertical gardens Patrick blanc

7. Shadow Play – Phoenix, USA

Shadow Play is an artwork by Höweler + Yoon in the Phoenix desert, where pedestrians can use a getaway from the burning sun. The geometrical modules in this artwork create an inviting pattern of shadow while allowing a breeze to get through. This way, it creates a micro-climate that improves life on a small but desirable scale.

Shadow Play Höweler Yoon phoenix usa