Bioclimatic Garden Building Promotes Biodiversity
August 22, 2015 by Robin Plaskoff Horton
Part of a plan to promote biodiversity and protect the surrounding environment in the South American city of Cali. Colombia, the multi-use Host and Nectar Garden Building also seeks to establish a network of gardeners and environmentally responsible citizens living in and around the complex.
Described as a “bioclimatic building,” the prototype building has the green façade which provides a microclimate within the building, reduces energy consumption, and its garden is used as a prototype to attract the insects and birds, part of an effort to create a network of “biological corridors.”
A collaborative effort by Madrid-based Husos, a platform for the development of both spatial interventions and research projects in architecture and urbanism, the project involved the creation of the gardens as well as activities to engage the community in understanding and protecting their natural environment.
The garden uses a variety of native bushes and climbing plants designed to host and produce nectar for butterflies and create a habitat for birds and other local insect species.
Butterflies, considered model organisms for studying the impacts of habitat loss and fragmentation, and climate change. function as indicators of the health of the environment and ecosystem wherein the structure resides, a region which is host to one of the world’s greatest concentration and diversity of butterflies.
Developed in collaboration with biologists from the Cali zoo, the building and gardens were designed to include an educational experience and as a place to forge new bonds between the Caleños and their natural environment.
Neighborhood children can participate in workshops, and visitors receive seeds and brochures to encourage them to plant gardens on their balconies, front yards, and patios.
From the Husos website: Husos is committed to the development of an architecture that is sensitive to the everyday, to the transformational capacity of small daily actions, to the empowerment of micro communities, to the possibilities of cooperation and exchange, to the beauty of diversity and singularity, to the constructive role of shared imaginations and affections and to the potentials of the unexpected. We employ an approach that is environmentally responsible, transdisciplinary and permeable.