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Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Water tower that makes its own rain!

Water towers are necessary parts of the landscape, but they aren’t often thought of as positive features of the towns they’re in. This water tower design was created by French firm Atelier Ramdam Architects for Latina, Italy; it is as much a public space as it is a water storage facility. Meant to act as a center for ecological and water management issues, the dream-like “Castle in the Sky” would both blend with the environment and enhance its surroundings.
The Castle in the Sky design consists of a ground-level park and pond, a mirror-clad shaft, and a large platform atop the shaft. Coating the central tower in reflective material makes it almost disappear, enabling the structure to be a part of the landscape without dominating it.
One of the most striking features of the Castle in the Sky is the fact that it makes its own rain. The tower uses the pond at the bottom of the structure as its reservoir. Water is pulled up through the tower, then vaporized on the rooftop platform, which doubles as a recreational space. The precipitation falls on the rooftop park as well as the ground-level park, cooling and hydrating the vegetation and visitors in the immediate area.
Vegetation at the ground level helps to filter the water after it rains down and before it runs back into the reservoir. The entire structure can be used for educational purposes or simply as a unique and beautiful gathering space for the entire town.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

The power of pencil and paint...

This is not exactly a water tower subject but posted as an example of something BWTAS understands: the power structures have in our physical and emotional landscapes and the influence artists have on our experience of this.

From the EDP 21/5/10

New weapons have been unveiled in the fight to restore and save Great Yarmouth's dilapidated Vauxhall Bridge - a sketch pad and artist's palette.

Yarmouth-based industrial landscape artist Katarzyna Coleman has been called in to sketch and then paint the 19th century bridge to help raise the profile of a campaign to breathe fresh into the gateway of the town.

Ms Coleman is sketching the bridge from the comfort of the neighbouring Seafood Restaurant, which is owned by bridge campaigner Miriam Kikis.

Mrs Kikis is hoping that grants can be found to restore the Fairbarn box girder bridge, but fears that the possibility of it being knocked down remains an outside option.

Once Ms Coleman has produced her set of Vauxhall bridge paintings in several months' time, Ms Kikis hopes she can use prints of them to use as cards to hand out to customers to promote her campaign.

It is also hoped that Ms Coleman's creation will end up in Yarmouth Library - prompting visitors to wonder what will happen if the bride is lost forever.

Ms Coleman said: “The bridge is a beautiful structure, although at the moment it is not pretty to look at. It is part of Yarmouth's unique industrial landscape and I am glad I can help Miriam.”

A major feasibility study is to be launched in to the bridge's future by Norfolk County Council, which hopes to seek outside funding from agencies such as the lottery grants. Urban regeneration company 1st East is supporting the study.

Image of Vauxhall Bridge by Pete Sturman found on Flickr.

Scan of original cutting