This opened a year ago, but I only just learned of it via Science Dump. Singapore’s Gardens by the Bay park, which includes some 220,000 species of plants from around the world, added these massive “supertrees” and connecting walkways. In addition to how cool they look, the mechanical trees, which stand as tall as 50 meters (and which are home to many real plants), “provide ventilation ductwork, rainwater collection and generate solar power which provides lighting to the various conservatories below.”
Gardens by the Bay is part of Singapore’s larger plan to improve quality of life through more greenery in the city. Having never been there I can’t say how extensive or successful this plan is, but when I saw the pictures I wondered if this is a peek at what cities of the future might look like. Maybe the people will look back at our mostly barren concrete-and-steel cities with the same dismay that we feel about the grim, filthy, and soot-blackened cities of the Industrial Revolution. Our descendants may lump us in with the pioneering generations of urban dwellers, back when the human race was just beginning to learn the basics of urban living.
More photos and video here.