Biomorphic Urbanism: A Guide for Sustainable Cities


Located along a formerly industrialized stretch of the Chicago River, the Wild Mile is a proposed 17-acre, floating eco-park that will create new opportunities for habitat restoration, education, and recreation. Image © SOM

Our patterns of urbanization must strengthen and restore natural systems, rather than diminish them.

SOM’s design for India Basin in San Francisco aims to transform one of the city’s former industrial areas into an active waterfront. Image © SOM | Steelblue

This rendering of the Seagull Island Master Plan, located in China’s Pearl River Delta, shows restored hydrological zones (darker green and blue areas) alongside agricultural and development sites. Image © SOM

An aerial view of SOM’s master plan for Jigna Eco-community outside of Abuja, Nigeria. The urban design preserves ecosystems within and surrounding the development. Image © SOM | PixelFlakes

Diagrams highlighting ecological and cultural assets in the Parkmerced Vision Plan, a neighborhood revitalization project in San Francisco. Image © SOM

From theory to practice

Left: Preliminary sketch of river systems in the downtown core of Guiyang, China. SOM recommended restoring 28 kilometers of riverfront to create a green framework for the city. Right: Rendering of the Guiyang Nanming Riverfront Culture CBD Master Plan. Images © SOM

Rendering of SOM’s proposal for a redesigned India Basin on the San Francisco Bay. Image © SOM

Good for people, good for the planet

The Kallang River channel running through Singapore’s Bishan Ang Mo Kio Park has been transformed in recent years from a concrete drainage canal into a restored river ecosystem. Led by Ramboll Studio Dreiseitl, this effort has allowed for the reintroduction of numerous native species, and has recast the park as a beloved public space. Photo by Wirbel1980, CC-BY-SA 3.0

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