Seoul Commune 2026 - project that offers alternative in overpopulated metropolises of near future.
Green Towers are located in the southern part of Seoul, one of the most densely populated places on Earth. Covering 393,400 square meters of land and bound by the Han River on the northern side, 15 towers of varying height -from 16 to 53 floors-function like one giant house in this park-like setting.
The concept is based on a mixture of purely private rooms, so called 'cells', and communally used spaces.
Seoul Commune 2026 suggests a minimized private space consisting of a bedroom and a bathroom in several spatial variations. Spaces where social interactions take place, such as living and dinning rooms, are situated outside the private units. The living cells operate as personalized hotel rooms and each basic residential unit satisfies private spatial needs, while the hotel's public space is shared and utilized by all.
The top floors of the towers have three distinctive spatial structures: the dome, the inverted dome, and the inverted cone, all serving as a sky lounge for the commune and include shared living and dining facilities. The dome type can be as large as 63 meters in diameter and 31.5 meters high, thus creating a huge atrium. The inverted dome and inverted cone type allow for large public spaces on the roof to be used as a roof garden or as an outdoor arena.
Between the top and the base of the tower, the trunk is composed of cells and bulbs for public activities. These bulb areas consist of at least 12 floors and have six variations in the size of plan and section. With diameters ranging from 64 meters to 34 meters, these spaces serve as offices, medical facilities, public services, welfare facilities, and other supporting commercial spaces.
The base of the 15 towers, where the park merges with the towers, creates the widest spaces of the site. Above, the first floor is 75 meters wide and extends up to the height of the first five stories. The ground floor space is reserved for pedestrians. Three walkways converge there and circulate around each tower's elevator core. Two out of three pedestrian walkways expand vertically and create the vertical connective tissue for the double helix stairs/terrace, thus expanding the park vertically. All vehicular circulation moves below the ground and is connected to underground parking spaces at each of the towers. A monorail loop on the second floor offers public transportation and people movers connect the neighboring towers.
A circulating canal along the edge of the park turns the whole site into an island, and utilizing the adjacent Han River as cooling water for each towers' independent power plant. A 30,175-square-meter pond at the center of the site is designed for leisure activities.
The exterior skin of the towers consists of hexagonal lattice structures that derive from the unique spatial structure and create the unique appearance of the towers.
The hexagonal openings are filled with various types of glass. Photovoltaic glass panels are placed in sunny areas for energy efficiency. Some exterior glass windows are recessed to create shaded balconies.
The outer surface covering the lattice structure is made of a geotextile that creates an environment where vines can grow during the summer months to shade the openings. These integrated green structures have an internal watering system and a fog machine with automatic temperature and humidity sensors to optimize the environmental conditions of the plants. The water distribution system also carries up to 30 percent of the cooling load during the summer and cleans the glass windows of the building in the heavily polluted city of Seoul.