City border lectures, 31st of March

In a series of four lecture evenings the Amsterdam architecture centre Arcam explores the city’s borders. What is the role of environments where nature can thrive and inhabitants can recharge? Should we make greener buildings to draw the landscapes deeper into the urban fabric? This evening highlights the role that microbiology, biomimicry and mini-habitats can play, and we focus on biospheres in which humans, animals and plants live together.

Next to a lecture by’s research director, architect and teacher at the Academy of Architecture Amsterdam, Mathias Lehner there will be contributions by Lydia Fraaije, Biomimicry, and Edwin Gardner, Studio Monk. After the presentations there is room for debate and discussion. The event is a in collaboration with the Van Eesteren Museum.

Date: March 31, 2020
Time: 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. | 7.45 pm walk-in
Location: Van Eesteren Museum, Noordzijde 31, 1064 GV Amsterdam
Ticket price: Regular € 12.50
Language: Dutch
Sign up online.

This lecture program is part of the design study “The City Edges Lab” on new typologies for the city edges, with Amsterdam as a test case, a joint initiative of ARCAM and BNA Research and is supported by the municipality of Amsterdam and Ymere and co-financed by the Surcharge for Top Consortia for Knowledge and Innovation (TKIs) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs. The Hogeschool van Amsterdam, the Amsterdam Academy of Architecture and the Hogeschool Utrecht collaborate as knowledge partners.

Perspectives on nature-inclusive building

With’s ‘First Guide to nature-inclusive design’ in its second edition, a Dutch version available soon and interest abroad in a German edition it is clear that building for biodiversity is more than a trend but here to stay. With good reasons indeed.

Watch the five video’s on nature-inclusive building produced by Dutch Foundation Het Overzicht from Zwolle where different stakeholders speak about the value of this approach: inhabitants, a project developer, an architect and’s Maike van Stiphout as a landscape architect.

The videos (Dutch with Dutch subtitles only) are also featured on

Bird Home Competition

The LEGENDARY BIRD HOME 2020 competition is the first in a planned series of competitions looking to raise awareness for the global environmental crisis. This competition is a collaboration with Birdly – a socially-responsible startup.

Submissions need to include details of the building method and the materials to be used, ensuring that the structure could be built by a single person with tools that are widely available.

The winning designs will receive a share of the prize fund as well as media coverage, and their designs will be put forward for production and sale.

Register by: Tue, Feb 11, 2020
Submit by Fri, May 29, 2020

More information. The competition is organized by BeeBreeders, a Singapore based architecture competition organizer with a fixed large international jury panel.

Designing for biodiversity in neighbourhoods

What can you do in the urban lay-out and the landscape design in neighbourhoods to make space for wildlife? The Bundesamt für Naturshutz made a hands-on brochure. The brochure is filled with blueprints of neighbourhoods enriched with proposals. The proposals have been discussed with housing corporations and communities. The strategy named AAD – Animal Aided Design, is developed by Thomas Hauck (University Kassel) and Wolfgang Weisser (TU Munchen)

Brochure link: .

New York City introduces bill to make glass buildings more bird-friendly

New York has passed a bill that updates the city’s building code with requirements to make new glass structures safer for migratory birds.

New York City Council’s bill requires the surface of new glass buildings rising 75 feet (23 metres) or more – approximately seven storeys – to be patterned to make them more visible to birds.

New York’s chapter of the American Institute of Architects, the American Bird Conservancy, and New York City Audubon all supported the legislation, as reported by CityLab.

The bill includes a set of bird-friendly design and construction guidelines that advise the use of fritted glass – which features ceramic lines or dotted marks on the surface. This adaptation would reduce the transparency of clear glass buildings, making them more visible to birds.

Existing glazed towers are not affected by the new mandate but any renovations are required to comply. New structures built on top of a green roof, no matter the height, must meet new requirements. (21-12-19 Dezeen, Bridged Cogley)


bird friendly handbook:

Integrated planting temper tropical climate in new hotel

Thanks to the ‘greenery facade’ of the Chicland Hotel, all rooms have a more attractive view in this hotel tower on the waterfront in the touristic city of Da Nang, Vietnam. Besides of aesthetics, the “greenery system also creates a micro climate for the building and makes interior space cooler.”claim the architects. “The plants used in the project are tropical plants and are suitable to marine climate such as: cymbidium hybrid, tournefortia argentea, ficus Superba, bougainvillea, pluchea indica…etc.”, explain VTN architects.

Source: Archdaily, Text and images (c) VTN architects (Vo Trong Nghia).

Free Inspiration Magazine

As a follow up of the Congress ‘Natuurlijk!’ in November 2019 an inspiration magazine will be published on January 6: the Inspiration magazine Nature Inclusive Building.

The Inspiration magazine is a bundle of inspiring, enthusiastic but also concrete and practical developments in the field of nature-inclusive construction. The magazine also looks to the future: what will await us in 2020 in this area?

In the Inspiration magazine ‘Natuurinclusief Bouwen’ you can read about, among other things the vision behind the Nature Inclusive Building Toolbox and the top 11 inclusions for clients who want to integrate nature into their projects. Furthermore there is info on an evaluation model for ecosystem services, with which the value of green can also be translated financially.

You can request a free copy of the Inspiration magazine Nature Inclusive Building. Do this before Wednesday, December 18, and you will receive the edition on January 7, 2020.

“Architecture is a living body.” MIA architects’ Sky House, Ho Chi Minh City

“Saigon is a metropolitan city of Vietnam with the highest density of construction, vehicles andpopulation.With that, followed the blooming of urban infrastructure and traffic congestion. On the other hand, it causes the lack of green spaces, where people can seek tranquility and sit in harmony with nature to release stress. “

With this analysis MIA Studio designed a private home in 2019 that co-houses man together with flora in an almost 50-50 ratio of space. The metropolitan constraints have been turned into high quality living with using various plantings, bushes and up to 6 meter high trees. Horizontal and vertical connections (also with a patio op en to the sky – hence the name) make greenery ubiquitous and an essential part of the spatial experience – delicately designed to connect to nature in different weather condtions and at different moments of the day.

Source: “Sky House / MIA Design Studio” 02 Dec 2019. ArchDaily. Picture: (c) Trieu Chien.