Mooring post facade habitat

Housing Cooperation De Warren starts with a new housing project on IJburg (Amsterdam) that ‘structurally supports and improves biodiversity‘. Next to a large green roof the ‘piéce de résistance’ is the more than 1 meter wide wooden outer shell of the building made of reused mooring posts featuring outdoor spaces for the human inhabitants and shelter for a large variety of plants and birds.

Architect Boris Zeisser of Natrufied Architecture designed the ultra-collective apartment building De Warren on the new Centrum Eiland in IJburg. Next to 36 social and mid-market rental apartments there are 800 sqm of collective spaces inclusing a theater, yoga space, makerspace, offices, meeting rooms, kidsspace and a music studio. The design is the result of four workshop days with all the future residents.

The building will be made of biobased materials. The structure is drawn up from CLT (cross laminated timber), flax insulation and recycled wooden finishes. Reusing building products from demolished buildings is being researched. The building will be completely energy self-sufficient and ‘rain proof’.

New public life in the city

Due to the measurements taken in the current Corona period public life in cities has decreased. Wild animals have sensed these peaceful urban areas and are discovering formerly unchartered parts of our cities. A new form of public life evolved subsequently.

Reuters shared footage of deer resting and fouraging in a park in the East of London in the beginning of April. Also, Reuters reports of a wilde bear inspecting a temporarily empty cable car station in the metropolitan area of Istanbul. Earlier in the week wild goats have been spotted eating flowers from the window sills in residential areas in North Wales, as have been wild peacocks. In Chile, finally, the third wild cougar has been filmed (and caught) in the capital of Chile, Santiago, reports BBC/Reuters.

National Garden Check App

In times of Corona many people are improving their home, and, if they have one, their garden. Just in time with Spring having arrived and the nice weather the new Dutch National Garden Check App has been launched. It easily guides you through a number of questions about your garden, that help improve quality of life for all species. For example: how do you deal with the soil? How do you control unwanted insects and plants? What kind of garden fence do you have? Based on the answers, a score is calculated, from A (very good) to G (work to be done!) And tips are given. You can use it for a greener and finer garden where people and animals like.

Check out the App online for free.

The botanical city

authors: Matthew Gandy, Sandra Jasper

Roadside “weeds” and other routinely overlooked aspects to urban nature provide a fascinating glimpse into complex global ecologies and new cultures of nature emerging across the world. This unique collection of essays explores the botanical dimensions of urban space, ranging from scientific efforts to understand the distinctive dynamics of urban flora to the way spontaneous vegetation has inspired artists and writers.
The book comprises five thematic sections: “Histories and taxonomies,” “Botanizing the asphalt,” “The art of urban flora,” “Experiments in non-design,” and “Cartographic imaginations”. The essays explore developments in Berlin, London, Lahore, Tokyo, and many other cities, as well as more philosophical reflections on the meaning of urban nature under the putative shift to the Anthropocene.

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: