Thomas Heatherwick has revealed plansfor a cavernous park in Abu Dhabi beneath a fragmented canopy resembling the cracked surface of the Arabian desert.
British designer Thomas Heatherwick has revealed plans to create a cavernous public park in Abu Dhabi beneath a fragmented canopy resembling the cracked surface of the Arabian desert.
Occupying a 125,000 square-metre site, Thomas Heatherwick's Al Fayah Park will provide play areas, picnic areas, vegetable gardens and cafes, interspersed with a variety of plants and flowers native to the Gulf.
A series of columns will support the floating roof canopy, beneath which the designer will also add a public library, a mosque, an outdoor cinema, and indoor and outdoor performance spaces that can be used for live music, festivals and community events.
"Al Fayah Park incorporates a series of very special column structures, like the cracked pieces of a desert surface, which gently raise to form a three-dimensional landscape across the site," said Heatherwick. "These elevated pieces create a perforated canopy of partial shade under which a lush garden can grow, protected from the hot desert sun."
He continued: "This sunken oasis becomes a landscape of plants, mature trees and a cluster of public recreational spaces. The 20-metre-high shaded garden is conceived as a place for families to gather and picnic, as well as a place for learning and festivals."
"By creating partial shade for plants, the canopy reduces the amount of water lost to evaporation, improving the park's energy efficiency and sustainability. Whilst providing shade in the daytime, the elevated plates also become a network of unique meeting places in the cooler evening hours."