eVolo Skyscraper Competition, Honorable Mention


NeoTax is a made-up word from the Greek roots „neo“ (new) and „tax“ (order).

There have been many ideas in the past addressing the problem of disconnected skyscrapers. In fact, vertical peaks in a planar world create many dead ends and long connection paths while at the same time wasting area and interfering with surface related bio-ecological processes.

In a world of permanently growing population we therefore have to deal with the issue of finding a way to establish a higher urban density than presently encountered without degrading life environment. So this design does not aim at creating a single building complex to solve these problems but rather proposes the functionality of a network of a three-dimensional infrastructure organized in a horizontal and vertical street grid.

A 3D-grid infrastructure offers short connection paths and higher urban density with better local communication and less social isolation through 3D-street life and a higher number of neighbour interfaces. It favours geodesic closeness as a cube maximizes the volume among all hyper-rectangles with a given surface measure. Imagine that you can buy a plot in a city which has an xyz coordinate instead of a normal address to build your house on. Hence, designing the grid still leaves individual variability for each parcel owner.

The network is based on a modular system where each module can be viewed as a „quarter“. It can grow by adding framework modules in the first step which can be colonized by attaching units (houses) in the second step.

Of course, increasing density would create a couple of new problems like traffic and natural illumination. To handle traffic and communication it is important to break down the infrastructure to a 3-scale organization.

  1. The global 3d macro-communication between
    different modules across the city
  2. The meso-scale infrastructure in each module
    which makes the units accessible
  3. The micro-scale infrastructure within each unit.

This kind of structure entails also a decreased dependence on specific terrain conditions and warrants increased flexibility in choosing the location (forest, sea, desert, city extension, etc.). Condensing the city plot in a livable manner could therefore be a significant contribution towards preventing the waste of our limited planet surface. As a consequence it helps minimizing interference with surface related bio-ecological systems.

Marc Anton Dahmen