Manipulating the microclimates of urban environments might allow architects new means of creating the urban mega-structures of the near future.
Awarding Qatar the 2022 World Cup raised a few eyebrows at the time, but the country has proved they aren’t finished dispensing surprises. They have proposed designing a man made cloud to help keep footballers cool while competing
The “cloud,” filled with helium and built of light carbon material, would use four solar-powered engines for maneuvering between the stadium and the sun to provide shade.
With this in mind, it’s worth considering a tantalizing suggestion floated by BLDGBLG concerning the future interweaving of urban architecture and cloud architectures.
BLDGBLG discusses a proposed art project for Liverpool, intended to coincide with the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad. Antony Mc Call wishes to create a spinning column of artificial cloud a mile high. Entitled Column this swirling micro-climate will be created “by gently rotating the water on the surface of the River Mersey and then adding heat which will make it lift into the air like a water spout or dust devil.”
As BLDGBLG notes:
“the idea that cities might soon deploy large-scale specialty weather-effects—that is, permanent climatological megastructures—instead of, say, Taj Mahals or Guggenheim Bilbaos as a way of differentiating themselves from their urban competition is a compelling one.”