Launch Slideshow

vertical landscape

Zoltan E. Pali, FAIA, makes no bones about the steamy climate in Nausori, Fiji, where his firm, Studio Pali Fekete architects (SPF:a), is designing a pair of residential towers. Within this extreme environment, Culver City, Calif.-based Pali and his team created an evocative design that turns natural conditions to its advantage.

vertical landscape

Zoltan E. Pali, FAIA, makes no bones about the steamy climate in Nausori, Fiji, where his firm, Studio Pali Fekete architects (SPF:a), is designing a pair of residential towers. Within this extreme environment, Culver City, Calif.-based Pali and his team created an evocative design that turns natural conditions to its advantage.

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    Studio Pali Fekete architects

    Lush vines will soften the two residential towers at The Haven in Nausori, Fiji, lending them a distinctly vernacular identity. The naturally ventilated buildings will lie within a community designed by various firms and containing offices, a hotel, shops

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    bioLINIA

    Rendering

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    Studio Pali Fekete architects

    Model

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    Pugh + Scarpa Architects

    Site plan

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    bioLINIA

    Rendering

Zoltan E. Pali, FAIA, makes no bones about the steamy climate in Nausori, Fiji, where his firm, Studio Pali Fekete architects (SPF:a), is designing a pair of residential towers. “The temperature is always boiling there,” he says. Within this extreme environment, Culver City, Calif.-based Pali and his team created an evocative design that turns natural conditions to its advantage.

The 13- to 14-story project will use local materials and labor, which necessitated a simple, easy-to-build structure. Pali wants the buildings to work hand in hand with the area's abundant sun and moisture, so he plans to cover their concrete framework with terra-cotta planters. Not only will the planters supply a place for shade-providing vegetation, they'll also capture the region's near-daily rainfall. “In Fiji, water percolates through volcanic rock,” Pali explains. “We thought we could do the same thing.”

The design calls for water to filter through the planters into a central collector, then undergo more purification for reuse elsewhere in the building. The low-tech system welcomes the climate, instead of trying to shut it out. And, in contrast to the high-end resorts at the other end of Fiji's main island, the project will provide a full-time housing option for local residents. Part of a mixed-use complex called The Haven, the towers are tentatively scheduled to start construction in 2010 and to be completed in 2012.

project: The Haven, Nausori, Fiji

key green strategies: Vegetated walls, rainwater harvesting, natural ventilation, local materials, and mixed-use

architect: Studio Pali Fekete architects (SPF:a), Culver City, Calif.

developer: Executive Development Properties, Suva, Fiji

general contractor: To be determined (TBD)

project size: 800 square feet to 1,400 square feet per unit

site size: 19 acres

construction cost: TBD

rental price: TBD

units in project: 127