2012 Skyscraper Competition
Victor Kopieikin, Pavlo Zabotin
Natural disasters, the threat of technological meltdown and even the possibility of visitors from space all present a need for cities and even countries to reorganize to implement infrastructure that can protect people from possible catastrophes.
The “Citadel Skyscraper” project is imagined for Japan because of the numerous natural and manmade disasters that have struck the region in recent years. The project proposes a three-part implementation of new structures with an end result of protecting the island with a fortress-like defense shield. The first part involves a restructuring of the land use of all of the country’s major cities as residents are moved out of the city proper. Businesses and commercial endeavors will stay located within the cities, but residents will move out to sea and live in self-supporting residential skyscrapers, or citadels. The second part specifies the location of these citadels: They will be lined up as a single “sheet”, creating a barrier 2-3 km from the shoreline that can protect the mainland from tsunamis. The skyscrapers themselves are connected by a system of breakwaters and drainage channels, and are able to withstand waves up to 50 meters tall. These are further bolstered by a connected series of fiber sails, buried as deep as 1,200 meters, that surround the island. When the waves hit the sails and meet the oscillations of its stretched fibers, such a dissonance is created that the wave is reduced to nothing.
The third part of this plan involves a skyscraper design that can protect its inhabitants. The prototypical skyscraper for this project has a metal frame; its foundation is poured at a depth of 1,200 meters and it reaches 500 meters into the sky. By burying the structure so far into the earth, it is protected from seismic activity (earthquakes up to a magnitude 11), waves (up to 40 feet tall) and man-made disasters (such as the explosion of atomic weapons). A system of bars forming a single, one-piece shield around the building serves as its protection system. They are energetically self-sustaining, using wave power for energy generation, and they have live fish tanks to provide food for residents.
The citadels mainly function as residential structures, but every 50 meters there are recreation areas and mini parks. The buildings also feature restaurants, cafes, shops, cinemas and laundromats. If the citadel’s outer shield is closed completely in anticipation of disaster outside, the building is ventilated by blowers located every 100 meters that are connected to a system of niches filled with hydroponic algae that produce oxygen by absorbing carbon dioxide. The citadels are connected with the city and the coastal zone by above ground, high-speed trains that run through 4 systems of tunnels.