towering trees

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Penda proposes Toronto Tree Tower built from cross-laminated timber modules

Plants and trees sprout from the modular units that make up this timber-framed high-rise, proposed by architecture firm Penda for Toronto. Penda, which has offices in China and Austria, collaborated with Canadian company Tmber for the Toronto Tree Tower project. They propose an 18-storey residential block that would stand 62 metres tall, with a modular structure made from cross-laminated timber (CLT).

Wood would also clad the building’s staggered walls, and trees would grow from the homes’ generous balconies. “Our cities are a assembly of steel, concrete and glass,” said Penda partner Chris Precht. “If you walk through the city and suddenly see a tower made of wood and plants, it will create an interesting contrast. The warm, natural appearance of wood and the plants growing on its facade bring the building to life and that could be a model for environmental friendly developments and sustainable extensions of our urban landscape,” he added.

Snow clings to the jagged sides of Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming. This astounding geologic feature is considered sacred to the Northern Plains Indians and other tribes, who called it “Bear’s Tipi” or “Bear’s Lodge.” Hundreds of parallel cracks make it one of the finest crack climbing areas in North America. Devils Tower entices us to explore and define our place in the natural and cultural world. Photo by National Park Service.

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