The HavvAda artificial island was designed as an antidote to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s proposal to build a canal between the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara. The project has scores of critics, who worry about the environmental and regional impact opening up this waterway could have.
The 48 km canal, which could be completed as soon as 2023, would provide an alternative Mediterranean access route to the cluttered Bosphorous waterway, but it could also displace as much as one billion cubic meters of dirt. Developers commissioned renowned designer Dror Benshetrit to envision a solution to this problem. Read on to find out what he came up with.
Benshetrit has an enormous design portfolio, which includes designs sold the US chain store Target, but the HavvAda artificial island project is a first for him.
The dirt displaced by building the canal would be moulded into six hills on a man-made island near Istanbul. These would be supported by giant geodesic domes that form their own mini-climate and are arranged around a central core.
This unique arrangement enables, among other things, people to get from one point of the city to another within twelve minutes.
Each of the six domes would share infrastructure in what Benshetrit calls 3-dimensional design and the valleys created by the mounds of earth would be used as natural recreational areas.
Commercial buildings would be placed on the outside of each dome and residential facilities would be placed inside; a system of cable cars and other forms of public transportation would cut down the use and necessity of individual vehicles.
The island could accommodate 300,000 residents, who would enjoy a great deal less pollution, overcrowding and traffic than most city dwellers face today.
Benshetrit does not suggest that HavvAda is a panacea for urban development, but he does believe this is a starting point for re-invisioning how we build or design cities. This is an “evolving proposal,” he told Co.Design.