By Udita Chaturvedi
Photography: Courtesy Yerçekim
Read Time: 2 mins
Breaking the conventional style of citiscape gardens is a suspended garden in one of the busiest and most popular squares of Istanbul, Turkey…
Spread across an area of 60 sq. m., surrounded by cobblestone on three sides and the Bosporous Strait on the fourth, a steel frame (50 x 70 x 3 mm) has been set up on a raised brick platform to accommodate 144 flower pots that are suspended in the air from slim but sturdy 10mm galvanised wire ropes.
The idea of a Sky Garden was born, when the team of So Istanbul architects saw it as a solution to reinvent the congested area by adding some greenery; since there was no ground cover available, they resorted to creating something more than the conventional garden.
The suspended garden not only keeps the ground accessible but also acts as a canopy on sunny days, allowing both aesthetic and comfort pleasures for pedestrians and tourists, who can stand under the shadow of the pots or sit on the marine plywood planks. Additionally, plants with a strong fragrance have been carefully chosen for the pots. So when the wind blows from the Bosporus, visitors can feel refreshed.
Each of the sack-wrapped pots has been suspended, deploying a simple pulley system. The mechanism allows all the pots, which weigh equally, to move up and down if the ropes are pulled. While they are originally aligned in balance, if a visitor pulls a pot down for a closer look, the corresponding pot in the pulley system is lifted up.
Architecture firm So Istanbul considers public installations a tool to question an architect’s power over design. By giving visitors the freedom to change the installation, the architect is no longer able to control the form - this is also challenging for the architects because most designers don’t always enjoy lack of control over their designs. However, this freedom to change the installation allows the people, for whom it’s meant to be enjoyed, to experience and introduce change — allowing the community, whether locals or tourists, to feel a sense of ownership towards the installation.
Sky Garden is a well-thought design that makes smart use of a congested space and offers the visitors a unique experience while enjoying the beauty of the Sky Garden overhead and the Bosporus Strait ahead!