Stefano Boeri Architetti covers the Palazzo Verde in Antwerp with greenery

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More than 1,000 plants adorn the exterior of the Palazzo Verde accommodation that the Italian studio Stefano Boeri Architetti recently completed in Belgium.


The L-shaped residential block in Antwerp includes a total of 1,200 plants, 86 trees and 1,000 shrubs, which equates to 780 square meters of greenery.

Stefano Boeri Architetti completed the Palazzo Verde accommodation in Antwerp

The Palazzo Verde, which translates to Green Palace, was designed by Stefano Boeri Architetti as a green landmark for a larger master plan in the city called Nieuw Zuid.

Nieuw Zuid, which is overseen by local developer Triple Living, will include other apartment buildings like David Chipperfield and Shigeru Ban when completed.

Housing with trees in Antwerp
The building contains more than 1,000 plants

“The client envisioned the project as a green space, a green landmark for the Nieuw Zuid district,” said Stefano Boeri, founder of the studio.

The size and layout of Palazzo Verde was dictated by the master plan, which was drawn up by the Italian company Studio Associato Bernardo Secchi Paola Viganò.

Greenhouses in Antwerp
The facade is interrupted by balconies

All plants and trees used throughout the building are native species, chosen as “a continuation of the existing ecological context”, according to project director Hana Narvaez.

“The studio does a thorough site scan, often with the guidance of our consultants, in this case Laura Gatti, to make sure the species chosen follow a set of parameters,” Narvaez told Dezeen.

Apartment balcony by Stefano Boeri
The balconies are lined with parquet

According to the studio, the goal of the greenery is to help improve local air quality and improve urban biodiversity in the region.

The chosen species also have “reduced water consumption and need for maintenance” compared to other plant species, Narvaez added.

Greenhouses in Antwerp
Trees are also integrated throughout the building

Stefano Boeri Architetti is best known for his buildings incorporating plants, since the development of the Vertical Forest concept and the construction of his first prototype in Milan in 2014.

The studio has since developed vertical forests for Eindhoven, Tirana and the new Egyptian administrative capital, all of which will use local plant species to adapt to different climates.

Balcony of Palazzo Verde by Stefano Boeri
Greenery is hoped to purify the air

“It all starts with observing climatic conditions and a consistent selection of species,” Boeri told Dezeen.

“For us, greenery is not an ornamental element of the facade but a basic component of our architecture. We aim to create ecosystems which, over time, can self-regulate, grow and flourish”, a he continued.

Green housing
The building is clad in cement panels

Inside, the block has 67 apartments. Each has access to a loggia or a balcony, which breaks the fiber cement and concrete facade of the building.

The building’s loggias, which are sliding glass and clad in wood, are designed as extensions of the living spaces behind them.

Meanwhile, the balconies are designed “purely as outdoor spaces” and sit outside the living spaces.

Each is finished with white plaster walls and hardwood floors, but some are sheltered while others are open to the elements.

Balconies of Palazzo Verde accommodation
Some apartments have closed loggias with sliding glazing

The ground floor of Palazzo Verde is lined with commercial units, including the Circularity Center – a space with tools for residents to repair bicycles and household items.

The accommodation is complete with three roof gardens, as well as a 2,000 square meter courtyard connected to a public amphitheater.

A loggia area bordered by wood
The areas of the loggia are lined with wood

Stefano Boeri Architetti was founded by Boeri in 2011. Its head office is in Milan but it also has studios in Shanghai and Tirana.

Along with its vertical forests, the studio recently designed a new entrance and a new walkway at the Domus Aurea in Rome and is collaborating with Diller Scofidio + Renfro on the rebirth of the Pirellino skyscraper in Milan.

Boeri was the curator of this year’s Salone del Mobile fair. In an exclusive interview with Dezeen, he said his goal was to “demonstrate that Milan is alive” after the 2020 event was canceled due to the pandemic.

The photograph is by Paolo Rosselli courtesy of Stefano Boeri Architetti.


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