Designed in a collaboration between Japanese architect Sou Fujimoto and French firms Nicolas Laisne Associates and Manal Rachdi Oxo architects, this 17-story tower is set to pop up like a futuristic tree in Montpellier, France—thanks to its first place title in the Architectural Folie of the 21st Century competition. The so-called L'Arbre Blanc, or the White Tree, looks appropriately wacky—considering that the involved architects' previous designs include subway discos, pile 'o stick palaces, and bucolic toilet gardens—but also promises to be supremely multi-functional and even made from locally-sourced materials. Plus, the enthusiastic team guarantees the place to come equipped with "all the efficient properties of a tree"—whatever that might mean.
Inside the uh, trunk of the building, will be apartments of varying sizes, a restaurant, an art gallery, offices, and an exclusive bar with a panoramic views—accessible only to residents. On the exterior, layers of jutting balconies make for semi-shaded outdoor lounge spaces that will all but force inhabitants to really get to know their neighbors. "The balconies are proportioned to make you gravitate toward the outdoors," explains the design team, "like leaves fanning out to soak up the warm nourishing sunlight." Soak up a few more renderings, right this way.
· This Tree-like Building Sprouts Balconies Instead of Branches [Sploid]
· Sou Fujimoto-Led Team Designs Tree-Inspired Housing Tower for Montpellier [Arch Daily]
· All Sou Fujimoto posts [Curbed National]
· All Nicolas Laisne posts [Curbed National]