We are all accustomed to living in a pandemic-stricken world but will we ever be ready for it if it strikes again? God forbid that ever happens but Guallart Architects have already designed post-COVID housing for a new city in China clearly making the point that prevention is better than cure. This s ‘self-sufficient city’ will be built on the outskirts of Beijing in the form of apartment blocks which allow residents to live in style during lockdowns. Not just residences, the four-block structure will include everything from offices, swimming pools, shops, food markets, kindergarten, administrative centers, and a fire station so no one feels the need to leave for anything. Keeping the self-sufficient angle in mind, each building will be covered by greenhouses that will allow for the daily harvest of produce, enclosed beneath sloping roofs that collect solar energy. Let’s explore the project that won the residential and community category in a competition to design new urban typologies for Xiong’an New Area run by the local government.
China’s COVID-proof, smart city called Xiong’an is four Chinese style housing towers combined with a courtyard-style city square interspersed with greenhouses. It is built on the outskirts of Beijing.
The apartments feature a large south-facing terrace that catches enough sunlight to help to regulate the homes’ temperature and also provide open spaces in case of another lockdown. Each apartment comes with its own birdbox.
Huge communal areas are made keeping in mind social distancing norms. The co-working spaces are provided with 3D printers and rapid prototyping machines to make replacements for missing or broken items in the event of supply chain disruption.
Greenhouses cover almost all buildings; food and the daily harvest of produce come from greenhouses beneath sloping roofs that collect solar energy. It is entirely self-sufficient in the event of a full lockdown. a mix of hydroponic farming and LED grow lights systems open the door for indoor farming.