Nature in the city: the Roman Forest is presented to the world

Thanks to the genius and creativity of the architect Mario Cucinella, a true green structure will be built in Rome, inspired by tree-based architecture...

Roman Forest: spaces
The spaces inside the Roman Forest will host residences, commercial activities, coworking, relaxation and fitness areas (Photo: Mario Cucinella Architects)

Rome is preparing to welcome the Roman forest, a green architectural structure inspired by the beauty and functionality of trees.

The main goal of this project is to bring more nature to the city, through a sustainable approach at 360 degrees. The Roman Forest aims to create a technology that is in harmony with nature and that offers a range of services and activities for residents and visitors, aiming at the same time to improve the quality of life of the inhabitants of Rome and providing a sustainable alternative in theurban environment.

An avant-garde project, destined to become a symbol of innovation, sustainability and harmony between man and nature. Let's find out the details of this initiative that promises to bring new life to the Italian capital.

Innovation and sustainability in Malaysia: discovering BiodiverCity
Wuhan beyond COVID-19: an ecological city to be reborn

Roman Forest: city of Rome
The city of Rome is facing several challenges related to sustainability, from city traffic to waste management (Photo: Unsplash)

An urban oasis for the eternal city: it is Fo.Ro.

In recent years the city of Rome has conquered the pages of the newspapers for a series of problems ranging from waste management, to unsustainable traffic up to a worsened quality of life: in 2022 the city was ranked thirty-first in the classification of the Sole 24 Ore

If on the one hand the institutions are promoting the green mobility e communicating with other cities of the world to ensure that urban areas become the engine of sustainability, the private sector is certainly not sitting idle.

An innovative project of sustainable architecture is in fact about to take shape: part residence, part tree, the new Roman Forest – or Fo.Ro. – should be built between via delle Sette Chiese and via Cristoforo Colombo, as part of the restyling of piazza dei Navigatori, in the southern area of ​​the city.

The Foresta Romana project bears the signature of the famous Italian architect Mario Cucinella, a pupil of Renzo Piano and founder of SOS – School of Sustainability, a school to train young professionals on the challenges of sustainable architecture.

The structure of the building is inspired by a tree: the first floors house offices and commercial spaces that root it to the ground, while the residences on the upper floors form the trunk of the tree. Large curvilinear terraces with terracotta cladding extend from the residences, which recalls the texture and color of the bark.

This thirteen-story building (an underground car park and twelve floors above ground) will house, in addition to numerous apartments and commercial activities, also spaces for coworking, relaxation areas with spa and gym and even a small space for golf lovers.

“The Line”, a 500 billion dollar Saudi linear city, will be done
Reinventing to innovate: ecological vertical village in Montpellier

Roman Forest: trees
The Fo.Ro project is inspired by the beauty and functionality of trees (Photo: Mario Cucinella Architects)

Architecture and innovation at the service of the environment

An architecture that blends with nature and celebrates the Roman heritage: although the Roman Forest is located in a densely urbanized area, the design is inspired by the natural characteristics of the place, reinterpreting the distinctive elements of the Roman palaces of the last century.

THEsustainable approach was at the heart of the development, with climate analysis guiding the environmental design from the earliest design stages. During the summer, the transparent surfaces are screened to favor natural ventilation of the interiors, thus reducing the need for air conditioning. In winter, on the other hand, the amount of sunlight is exploited to the maximum to reduce the need for artificial heating.

A highly performing envelope has been designed to limit heat loss and maximize the building's energy efficiency. A rainwater collection point is also planned. 

A testament to how architecture can be both aesthetically pleasing and functionally sustainable at the same time, creating a technology that responds to the needs and challenges of the present. 

"It is a residential project that also includes a part of social housing, with a series of apartments assigned to specific categories, such as young couples, at controlled rents", explained the town planning commissioner of Rome, Maurice Veloccia.

“The goal of buildings like this is to raise the quality of the city's construction. Along the axis of the Cristoforo Colombo there are several similar projects, such as the new one Rectorate of Roma Tre, very performing from an energy point of view, born under the banner of environmental sustainability”.

Sustainability: the United Arab Emirates (and not only) protagonists of 2023
Wood City in Helsinki: the architecture of the future passes through wood 

Roman Forest: High Line
From an old elevated railway to a public garden: the High Line park in New York (Photo: Unsplash)

Urban green, so the metropolis breathe again

Secondo United Nations estimates, by 2050 two out of three people will live in urban centres. This data makes us understand how urgent and necessary it is to rethink urban planning and public services to face this global challenge

Urban greenery has become a crucial element for improving the quality of the city environment. Numerous studies show how greener in the city help mitigate the effects ofair pollution, support biodiversity and reduce the heat island effect.

This phenomenon, linked to the presence of surfaces and buildings that retain heat, contributes to the increase in daytime temperatures, the reduction of night-time cooling and the rise in pollution levels. Greater tree cover e ecological flooring made with natural materials, help solve this problem.

Like Rome, cities around the world are taking steps to reintroduce greenery into urban areas. Any examples? The High Line park in New York, which has transformed an old elevated railway into a luxuriant public garden, or the Bay South Botanical Garden in Singapore, with its huge green area with vertical gardens, scenic paths and spectacular waterfalls.

Everywhere in the world, nature tries to carve out a space in the concrete jungle, to offer a technology more healthy e planet for citizens.

Terra Solida, eco-sustainable flooring almost everywhere
Nature and city together: the ideas and innovations of Vincent Callebaut

Roman Forest: Villa Borghese
Numerous studies point to the environmental and health benefits of increased green coverage in cities (Photo: Unsplash)