With 150 trees sprouting across 5 floors of terraces, balconies, and roof gardens, apartment complex "25 Verde" in Italy rises like a giant treehouse, a forest-building ecosystem combining geothermal energy, water reuse, and natural cooling.
The 63-unit building’s design continues the arboreal theme, with wooden shingles and steel supports that look like tree trunks. In addition to cleaning the air around the building, the trees dampen noise pollution, provide shade, and help regulate the building’s temperature. The 200 trees (150 on the building + 50 in the courtyard) produce upwards of 150,000 liters of oxygen per hour during daylight hours and absorb almost 200,000 liters of carbon dioxide during nighttime hours.
Water is captured on the roof gardens and run down to the ground level forming a large pond that adds ambiance and a cooling factor in summer. The building's heating and cooling systems make use of geothermal energy, using heat pumps and an old well used by a 1950s Fiat factory at the same location.
Corten steel trees support much of the structure and serve as conduits for rainwater and greywater. Architect Luciano Pia modeled these on the majestic old Platanus trees in Turin. His mixed structure of architecture and plants is a unique work of biotecture that reimagines how we can live in cities.
25 Verde resident Paolo Botto gives us a tour of the building.