In order to fill up the incompleteness of the cathedral constructed in the city of Antwerp during the 14th century, a competition was held. The cathedral that was originally designed with two towers unfortunately had to compromise with one due to a failing budget. But now the city wishes to see the second tower too. Therefore, a competition called “Designing the Absent” has been organized that challenges designers to generate a new idea to fill this emptiness.
Tim Hobbelman and Chris Idema proposed a design that not only looks into the aesthetic quotient, but also considers the sustainability factor. Following the shape of the original tower, the new organic and self-sufficient solar powered eco tower incorporates living wall panels that are capable of maintaining a consistent water supply for the vegetation adhering to the façade. Rainwater pouring down the tower is collected at the base of the vegetation panels, after which it is redistributed using a sprinkler system.
Each window of the structure has “amorphous silicon” semi-transparent solar cells that generate enough energy to power the watering system. The amazing tower adding beauty to the city of Antwerp also creates a natural environment, making it a perfect place for birds and other wildlife to exist.