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Monday Flashback – Super Tree Grooves, Singapore !

We are back again with the another Flashback this Monday, This week we are featuring the Sustainable Architecture of 20th Century “The Super Tree Grooves”

Indian heritage is rich with architectural designs that promote space, an aura of freedom, power, and reverence. This time on visiting Singapore, we happened to visit the Super Trees for the night show. Here this week story is contributed by our community member, Shweta Agarwal from Noida.

Though they are not residential spaces, still I was impressed by the way they have given space to billions of plants in a small area. This thought process is not new, as the world is screaming for trees. I went ahead and found out how they have done it. Maybe we can incorporate this style in our latest projects.

The Plan of Super Trees.

There is an inner structure (vertical in shape, feels like a chimney from inside). The material used to build this 25-50 meters tall vertical structure is reinforced concrete. A steel frame envelops this reinforced concrete structure. Panels are placed in this steel frame, which are cloaked with several exotic varieties of plants and magnificent flowers from the Mediterranean and semi-arid subtropical regions. They are providing shade during the day and come alive for the breathtaking night-show at night. The climbing plants especially flourish here.

The exotic plants from the Mediterranean and subtropics are not commonly seen in this part of the world and are of high conservation value. They need a cool and dry climate to survive.

Some more innovative steps that have been taken are:


The specially selected glass panels allow optimal light in for plants but reduces excessive amount of heat. This is made possible by placing sensor-operated retractable sails that open automatically to provide shade to the plants when it gets too hot. Some also have photovoltaic cells on their canopies to harvest solar energy for lighting up the Super trees for the night show.


They have strategized cooling of only the lower levels. Chilled water pipes cast within the concrete slabs enable cool air to settle at the lower zone while the warm air rises and is vented out at high levels.

The panels are well maintained, and they breathe with lush and healthy hues. This is truly an inspiration and compels one to think that why
can’t each house have at least one outer wall designed the similar way.

A Skyway suspended at 22 meters height between the iconic Super trees, is a creative contraption which allows you to admire the most ravishing scene


The lake system near the Super-Trees gardens functions as a living ecological system.

Water run-off coming from the gardens is captured by the lake system. The water flow is reduced, and the sediments settle down. The aquatic plants absorb nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus in the water. In this way the water gets filtered in a natural way. A reduction of nitrogen levels is critical to minimizing alga bloom and ensures better water quality.

The water thus cleaned is discharged into the main water reservoir. The same water is used in the built-in irrigation system for the gardens.

These are habitats for fish and dragonfly. A diversity of aquatic plants is dropped in for, good water circulation and aeration. This keeps in check potential problems such as mosquito breeding.

If you have any sustainable building story or know any of the historical monument with a sustainable architect, fill this form and if we find it suitable as per our criteria we will feature in any of the monday flashback.

To know more about monday flashback and other stories visit here

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