Urban Forest: Good Earth Modern Times is a high-density forestation project that increases green and permeable surfaces in the city and reduces the heat island caused by sunlight reflected from glass façades. Together with Green Roofs, Vegetable Gardens, and Vertical Gardens, Modern Times belongs to a new generation of environmental regeneration projects aimed at improving the quality and variety of everyday life in contemporary cities. The project is the equivalent of large areas of forest and undergrowth honed onto a few hundred square meters of urban space. The terrace gardens that serve as, outdoor extensions of the living spaces are home to over a dozen trees numerous shrubs and flowering plants that will also attract birds and butterflies.
Reduces the Pollution of the Urban Environment: The vegetation within Good Earth Modern Times is uniquely designed to form a continuous green filter between the inner regions and the outer spaces of the inhabited areas, It possesses the, ability to absorb fine particles produced by urban traffic, to produce oxygen, to absorb CO2 and to shield the balconies and interiors from noise pollution. The benefits resulting from a reduction in pollution are apparent not just for the building itself and its residents, they also contribute to improving air quality across the whole city.
Reduces Energy Consumption: Trees and shrubs in Modern Times are irrigated with recycled water which is nutrient rich. The recycled water is drawn by a pump system powered by solar panels located on the roof to all the terrace gardens in the building. The water used by the trees and shrubs returns purified air in the atmosphere in the form of water vapour. The process extracts heat from the surrounding environment. The vegetation acts as a filter on the building reducing temperature between the interiors and exteriors. Drip irrigation helps to conserve water & increases the efficiency of irrigation.
Design Elements: The design attempts to break away from the typical apartment plan to bring in space planning features of a home. The design ensures that apartments do not even have common walls. The units are designed as homes that open up to the world through verandahs and sky gardens. The passages are also designed with sky courts at each level as an extension of the landscape.
Designing with Climate: Climate is one of the endemic aspects of space over others and is adopted as a starting point for design. Tropical architecture has to act like an umbrella: stay out of the rain, stay out of the sun, and let the wind through to keep the body cool.
Design for natural light & ventilation: Modern Times is designed with excellent natural light and cross ventilation. Large windows, wide verandahs and air channels to vent out the hot air, and thermally conducive materials, are all features that reduce the necessity for artificial light and ventilation.
Water: Rainwater harvesting and recharging: Rainwater is harvested and the ground water is recharged through well spread out percolation channels. Roof water will also be passed through a series of filters and collected in the water tank.
Water recycling: An on campus sewage treatment plant recycles all wastewater. The waste water from the kitchens and bathrooms is collected and treated with a series of filters to emerge clean. This water is then used for gardening & toilet flushing purpose.
Renewable Energy: A roof top solar power system with grid-tie inverter will be supporting the KSEB power for the common services in the building. Energy efficient artificial lights and equipment will ensure low maintenance costs for the Modern Times community.
Waste management: We propose to have an efficient garbage disposal system that separates solid and non-biodegradable waste from organic waste. Organic waste which can be collected and composted. The compost will be reused as manure. Some of the non-biodegradable waste can be incinerated. For the metals and plastics, one could look at recycling agencies which can pick up the waste.
Materials: The materials and finishes used are a blend of the natural and eco-sensitive making them easy to maintain. Exposed clay block exteriors are easy to maintain & age gracefully with time.
Paints: We encourage the use of low VOC paint internally, as it is nontoxic, lead free and low in VOC. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC), commonly found in most indoor and outdoor paints, give out low level toxic emissions into the air for years after application.
Craft: Traditional crafts like carpentry, stonework and masonry are slowly dying out as they cannot adapt to newer material, technology and requirement. But the value they impart to a space cannot be overlooked. We make a conscious effort to integrate these crafts and their skilled crafts persons into the building process. In all our work, we emphasize human resource rather than material.