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Daniel Thomas Griffin, in designing a new skyscraper for Melbourne, Australia, has taken the city’s master plan for the year 2030 into account: the city needs to densify significantly over the next two decades, and Griffin has designed a building to do just that.

Tower Malapropos is designed to be different than the typical vertical tower with horizontal slabs. In the typical skyscraper, Griffin argues, the only place for people to socialize between floors happens on the elevator or in a stairwell. In an effort to promote “social sustainability,” he has designed ample social spaces between floors, with seating, gardens, and stairways. He calls the building’s floor plan an “undulating floor plate;” it is this flexible floor plan that will allow for the creation of social spaces between floors.

Tower Malapropos is firmly rooted in the needs of its site in Melbourne, but its inspiration actually comes from Japanese anime and the concept of “optical camouflaging.”

Housed in the Tower Malapropos will be gyms, offices, nightclubs, youth hostels, assisted living homes for the elderly, and more. To support such a diverse array of tenants, Griffin is urging for a reconsideration of the strict zoning codes in Melbourne’s central business district. He also suggests that large corporations offset rent as part of their corporate social responsibility programs so that social service providers can occupy prime space within the building.

By emphasizing the diverse needs of the people of Melbourne, Tower Malapropos offers a socially responsible way to densify the city by 2030.


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