NH Architecture is delighted to have been awarded the winner of the 2018 Land Art Generator Initiative (LAGI) competition for the entry “Light Up” – a large scale public arts and urban design initiative that produces clean energy.

The St Kilda Triangle was named as the site while previous design sites included Dubai, New York, Copenhagen and Santa Monica. This year, participants from more than fifty countries submitted concept proposals for the free global competition.

Designed in collaboration with Ark Resources, John Bahoric Design and RMIT Architecture, the proposal combines solar, wind, plant fuel-cell energy harvesting, and battery storage into the landscape of the St Kilda Foreshore.

Our design response is a lightweight tensile structure formed of some 8,600 solar panels that would create a light-filtering canopy over Jacka Boulevard, providing shade for visitors and improving links between existing public, pedestrian, and street networks. It would produce 2,220 megawatt hours of clean energy annually for the St Kilda Triangle site, enough to power nearly 500 Australian homes as well as Luna Park, and the Palais.

LAGI co-founders Elizabeth Monoian and Robert Ferry applaud the pragmatic design and celebrate its strong visual impact.

“The form of a draping tapestry creates a timeless and instantly recognizable image for St Kilda that compliments existing landmarks without competing with them. With such a large component of the artwork spanning Jacka Boulevard, Light Up manages to create one large functional park space that flows from the Palais forecourt to the beach. The experience of traversing the park will be like walking through a flowing stream of solar energy.”

“The street is such a big divider between the beach and the Triangle site, and we thought, ‘what if we actually use that street and turn it into a positive?’” says NH Senior Associate and project lead Martin Heide.

The structure would be constructed with a series of Vierendeel trusses and cross-tension cables. The majority of the power would be generated by the highly efficient and flexible solar photovoltaic panels. In addition to the solar panels, the proposal includes wind power generated by the swaying bridge and microbial fuel cells. Lithium-ion cells from used electric car batteries embedded in the handrails of the bridge can store excess energy generated by the panels. This extra energy can then be fed back into the grid.

Central to our team’s approach was creating a design utilising existing technologies, where a high return on investment was possible due to the economy of scale. The components are tried and tested, and available on the market currently.

The Team:

NH Architecture: Martin Heide, Dean Boothroyd, Emily Von Moger, David Allouf, Takasumi Inoue, Liam Oxlade, Michael Strack, Richard Le
Ark Resources:  Mike Rainbow, Jan Talacko
John Bahoric Design: John Bahoric
RMIT Architecture Students: Bryan Chung, Chea Yuen Yeow Chong, Anna Lee, Amelie Noren

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