GO GREEN IN THE CITY (English version)

         “There are limited amounts of space. The area is densely populated, and there are just too many buildings.”

The above pretty much summarizes one’s impression of the way of life in Singapore, a small country that has long enjoyed buoyant economic growth. Somehow there are no shortage of lush green spaces. It is probably because the people here attach great importance to living in perfect harmony with the natural surroundings. They put in plants practically everywhere, to the extent that it has become quite habitable. Nowadays Singapore enjoys a reputation as one of the cleanest and most livable cities in the world.

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         One North Residence is a condominium complex created by the Government of Singapore. Located in the Buona Vista district, the projects give top priorities to the beautification of landscape within the common areas. Forms and functions are taken into account when they decide to go for three common areas. First, there is a graphic-style swimming pool bordered by passageways and grassy lawns. Nearby lies children’s playground that consists of a small hill. On the edge of the grassy mound stands a full array of lush green vegetation that adds natural touch and textures to the landscape. The plants that thrive here are all harmless species because this is the rendezvous for everyone young and old.
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The second common area is the rooftop deck. To maximize the use of resources, the deck consists of a simple-looking sky garden. Next to it there is a swimming pool with a view of the sprawling urban landscape. The area is bedecked with small trees that are easy on the eyes. There is a sky walk that connects the gardens on top of the two buildings. Gazebos made for relaxation are nestled alongside small trees and beautiful lines of bamboo plants.

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 The third common area is a courtyard, in which a well groomed raintree thrives. It is designed by Chan Huaiyan, who is director of Salad Dressing, the project’s landscape architects. He recalls that every effort is made to save this more than 50 -year-old tree. For example, a radius of 7  meters from the trunk is kept intact to allow for healthy, vigorous roots and avoid unwanted consequences during the period under construction.

The raintree continues to thrive and provide a crisp, cool canopy for the residents here.The verdant oasis also consists of a small plaza. A variety of retail shops on the ground floor cater to needs of local residents. Further and beyond, an open terrace extends to meet a beautiful shallow pond in rectangular shape. Ornamental lights are put in place both inside the pond as well as alongside of it. For a neat appearance, the lights are hidden inside rectangular boxes that serve as deck furniture. The enchanting atmosphere makes it ideal for relaxation in the late afternoon and evening.

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Apart from main components, the architects also pay attention to detail by putting in plants practically everywhere, including climbers on balconies and between buildings. This results in the formation of vertical gardens with a water feature at the center of a verdant oasis. It is not just beauty or contemporary looks that make this project so attractive. Interestingly enough, it bears witness to the fact that the developers pay very much attention to the environment. Architecture may evolve over time, but humans can never do without nature. That explains why the landscape architects make every effort to conserve existing trees on this property. This is the kind of idea that will make our home and our planet an enchanting

place in which to live.

 It is not just beauty or contemporary looks that make this project so attractive. Interestingly enough, it bears witness to the fact that the developers pay very much attention to the environment. Architecture may evolve over time, but humans can never do without nature. That explains why the landscape architects make every effort to conserve existing trees on this property. This is the kind of idea that will make our home and our planet an enchanting place in which to live.

 

Owner : One North Residence Project, Singapore

Landscape Architect : Salad Dressing

Photograph : Sitthisak Namkham

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