Vertical Village Redux

News: Wow! Image on the left is the Winner of the International 3D Award for Best Architectural Visualization (Still) category at 3d festival in Copenhagen, Denmark. See all winners and nominees in several categories (including nominated works by ILM, Pixar, Weta etc.) at:

This is design of 400 meters (ca.1200 feet) high autonomous building done for "Vertical Village" international competition 1997. The shape of the building is conceived as double helix. In one helix are living spaces, apartments etc. In other are public spaces such as schools, offices, shops etc. In between these two is third, open air helix, with terraces, greenery and recreational spaces. By the competition theme the building should be able to house up to 5000 people most of which should live AND work there. And also be as self-sustainable as possible.
I initially designed this building in '97, made some 3D CG (good-looking for that time) - and pretty much forgot about it. So, recently I decided to redo 3d graphics using original tower design.
In six years CG software and hardware improved dramatically and I felt it was time to throw some serious 3d power on it.
Except for some tweaks at the top of the tower - I didn't change design on the tower at all. But I did try to work out some details of the building based on new research and information about sustainable materials and concepts.

Surrounding city and all other gizmos are new, however. Final scene has, all in all ca. over 4 million polys (compared to ca. 200.000 polys in '96) and it doesn't look bad animated. Check it out in my showreel. (among other things - there's segment of tower animation there)

Modeled in AutoCAD and 3d studio MAX, rendered in 3D Studio MAX.

Click on image to see hi-res version ^^^      

Looking back I realized that this tower and its design have lots to do with the work of architect Ken Yeang.

In 1996 when I first made concept for this design I did not know anything about Ken Yeang's work. It is not like I claim I invented anything here - obviously, eco-design of mega structures is not a new idea (think of Paolo Soleri) - so I wasn't surprised when I realized Yeang's work has many similar features to what I was trying to do with my design here.
Yeang actually built real buildings based on these principles.

Everybody should get to know his work.

Get some literature here and learn.

Stay tuned: more technical analysis of this project is coming up. Energy and structure diagrams also on the way

  I would like for this work to be viewed as exercise in concept of autonomous tower structure and, of course, exercise in making good-looking computer graphics.

New images here are intentionally shifted from architecturally descriptive images toward more cinematic and moody 3d CG environments more applicable to movie set environments.

I make my living in last 8 years by doing 3d CG so I intentionally want to break out of simplistic architectural representation of design by making images convey certain mood and be more cinematic rather that just descriptive. At the same time I definitely would like to add tome real-world architectural ideas and concerns to cinematic environments. More often than not, structures seen in big budget movies are appealing visually but could not work at all as practical buildings in the real world.
Click on image to see hi-res version ^^^  

So here's my attempt to fuse (up to certain level) my knowledge in both of these areas in one project.

You can still see old images and some 1/6 segment structural layout studies here. (hey it was '97 - done using 3d studio R4 for DOS). Up to date schematics coming up real soon.

Thanks for viewing and go ahead and send some comments!

Here's main page of my site.


  Click on image to see hi-res version ^^^  
Click on image to see hi-res version ^^^
All artwork on this site © Igor Knezevic