NatureStructure: Design that Works with Nature

The history of the built environment could be broadly defined as a battle against nature: barricading cities and coasts with sea walls, expanding over wetlands and green terrain, dividing migration routes with motorways. Tremendous effort has gone into the long war against the natural world.

Yet as sea levels rise and the severity of floods, droughts, and a changing climate increase — while species and habitats decrease — efforts to conquer nature have proven to be futile at best and destructive acts of ego at worst.

NatureStructure represents an end to the battle against nature.

MARS: Modular Artificial Reef Structure by Reef Design Lab
MARS: Modular Artificial Reef Structure by Reef Design Lab

Instead of combating the natural world, NatureStructure embraces nature and natural processes as integral parts of the built environment and advocates designing and developing in collaboration with natural systems. Norwegians have a phrase for it: “To play on the same team as nature.” The Dutch call it “Building with nature.”

A canal in Manilla, before and after the installation of Biomatrix Water's Floating Islands
A canal in Manilla, before and after the installation of Biomatrix Water’s Floating Islands

NatureStructure provides a framework for a new generation of nature-centric design and development; work created to support and employ nature in addressing the problems human development has created for itself.

“Human subtlety will never devise an invention more beautiful, more simple or more direct than does nature because in her inventions nothing is lacking, and nothing is superfluous.”

– Leonardo da Vinci

NatureStructure premiered at the Boston Society of Architects’ BSA Space Gallery in 2018 and is now available for other venues. Please get in touch to learn more.

Habitat Panels to restore aquatic life to Sydney Harbor by Reef Design Lab
Habitat Panels to restore aquatic life to Sydney Harbor by Reef Design Lab

Header Image: POP-UP by Third Nature. Copenhagen, Denmark.