Spectacular Forest with…. Technological Trees! Gardens by the Bay, Singapore.TRAVEL world's most unusual
The latest and most distinct addition to the Singapore skyline, Gardens by the Bay look like they belong on another planet with their wiry canopies and greenery where the bark should be, but the man-made “supertrees” that sit against the backdrop of Singapore’s central business district mimic the qualities of trees here on earth.
These supertrees, as the name suggests, are giant, albiet artificial trees, capable of using solar energy to light themselves at night, and harvesting rain water to irrigate the surrounded flora and fauna! Walk along the spiral Skyway suspended between two Supertrees, and reflect on just how ingenius this is, while being awed by the splendor of Marina Bay Sands right across.
Gardens by the Bay consists of three distinct waterfront gardens, set in the heart of Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay. Spanning 101 hectares (250 acres), the Singapore government intends to transform their “Garden City” to a “City in a Garden,” enhancing the quality of life with urban flora amid human fauna, with flourishes of artistic brilliance.
An international competition for the design of the master plan, held in January 2006, attracted more than 70 entries submitted by 170 firms from 24 countries. Two firms – Grant Associates and Gustafson Porter – were eventually awarded the master plan design for the Bay South and Bay East Gardens respectively.
Stretching between 80 and 164 feet (25 to 50 meters) into the air, they’re actually “vertical gardens” that perform a multitude of functions, which include planting, shading and working as quasi-environmental-engines.
The Supertrees showcase exotic ferns, vines, orchids and bromeliads. Fitted with environmental technologies that mimic the ecological function of trees, photovoltaic cells charge them with artificial photosynthesis, rainwater collects for irrigation and fountain displays. The Supertrees also serve air intake and exhaust functions as part of the conservatories’ cooling systems.
There are 18 supertrees in Bay South, and although their symmetrical shape and obviously metallic structure make it look a bit like a garden on Cybertron, when you get up close you see they’re covered in plants.