City living often means apartment living, and apartment living inevitably means a shortage of personal outdoor space. This conceptual building from Barcelona firm Nabito Architects would solve that problem by giving high-rise dwellers a taste of suburban life. Each unit features a small yard that rests on top of the unit below.
The unique shape of the building allows the roof of each apartment to serve as the foundation for a small green space belonging to the apartment above. Assuming that the roofs were massively reinforced and soundproofed, the addition of these green roofs could have very real benefits for everyone in the building.
The “Stairscraper” would not allow for high-density urban living since it takes up a large amount of space for a relatively small number of tenants, but it would certainly offer a unique urban living experience. Unlike most apartment buildings, each unit would be entitled to its own private outdoor space, keeping tenants in touch with nature and allowing them to grow their own flowers and/or a small vegetable garden.
Safety would no doubt be a difficult-to-overcome concern in a design like this. The addition of safety-glass walls and handrails may be enough to take care of the safety concerns, but may also detract from the feeling of being outside in a “real” yard or garden.
Regardless of the drawbacks inherent in the design, an urban building that incorporates outdoor spaces is a refreshing idea. The architects behind the Stairscraper say that some levels of the building would be designated as community spaces for all tenants, so the social aspects of an apartment building would not be lost. The tower is reportedly going to be constructed in Abu Dhabi, UAE at some undisclosed date in the future.