Sand Motor

How can infrastructure work with ecological dynamics?   The Sand Engine (Zandmotor), is an human-created sand peninsula that is designed to gradually erode in a way that sustains a coastline against coastal erosion.  Coastal erosion is increasing world-wide due to climate change driven sea level rise.  The Sand Engine represents an example of a new approaches to coastal engineering …

WOHA Architects – Buildings for high density tropical Garden Cities

WOHA is Singaporean architectural firm that aims to re-invent skyscrapers for  dense urban living.  Some of their influential projects are  The Met Apartments in Bangkok, and the Singapore School of the Arts, and the Parkroyal on Pickering hotel in Singapore. WOHA was founded in 1994 by architects Wong Mun Summ and Richard Hassell.  It has designed projects …

De-extinction: using genetics to revive & restore extinct species

Big animals regulate many ecological processes and their activities create spaces for others animals to live.  Millenia of human action has eliminated most of the these big animals, decreasing their numbers and driving many of them extinct.  Can these extinct animals be restored? Revive and Restore is a NGO that aims to promote the use of rapidly …

Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust – Reshaping Land Ownership in Scotland

How can communities reclaim control over their shared challenges? In March 2002, Gigha islanders managed, with help from grants and loans from the National Lottery and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, to purchase the island from its absentee landlord for £4 million.  The island is now owned through a development trust called the Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust. …

Cable Cars as Urban Public Transport in Medellin

How can cities grow in ways that promote social inclusion? The city of Medellín, Colombia, built a cable car system to provide a new type of public transport that connected poorer people, living in rugged areas, to Medellin's public transport system.  The cable car system, Metrocable, was part of an integrated investment in new public transport and neighbourhood infrastructure. …

Eigg Heritage Trust – Reshaping Land Ownership in Scotland

How can people organise to gain control of the place in which they live? The Scottish Ilse of Eigg replaced its historic semi-feudal system of land ownership, in which residents were tenants of an absentee laird (a large landowner) with a new model community based ownership. Eigg is one of the Scottish Inner Hebrides.  In 1997, the island was bought from its absentee landlord for …