The Gallery: Rome’s World Expo bid aims for solar utopia
Image credit: Cover Images
Rome has unveiled a bid to host the 2030 World Expo that would see every participating country contributing a solar farm to power the exhibition site and decarbonise surrounding neighbourhoods in the Italian capital.
Expo 2030 Roma would take place in Tor Vergata, a vast area in the Italian capital that, although being home to one of the country’s leading academic hubs as well as residential buildings, has experienced neglect in recent decades.
The plan aims to reverse that decline through sustainable, long-term development including a 150,000m2 solar park with peak generating capacity of 36MW that it is claimed would be the world’s largest urban, publicly accessible solar farm.
The design incorporates hundreds of ‘energy trees’ that open and close their panels throughout the day, harvesting energy while also offering shade to visitors. From above, this infrastructure gives the entire Expo site a signature mosaic look and is complemented by the Eco-system 0.0 pavilion, the tallest building on the site, which provides cooling through evaporation.
The design divides the site into three main areas – the City, the Boulevard and the Park – in a layout that makes a gradual transition from urban to natural. In the west, the City functions as the Expo Village and will become an extension of the University of Tor Vergata’s campus after the event. The Boulevard, the central pedestrian axis, is a pathway through all of the national pavilions. Finally, the Park in the east is covered with lush vegetation and accentuated by thematic buildings, including ‘Pale Blue Dot’, a pavilion dedicated to disseminating knowledge about the natural world. All pavilions would be fully reusable to create an innovation district after the event.
The proposal was created by CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati in association with architect Italo Rota and urban planner Richard Burdett. Technology partners include Arup for sustainability, infrastructure and costing, LAND for landscape design, and Systematica for mobility strategy.
The host city for the 2030 World Expo will be chosen in November this year by the 170-member Bureau International des Expositions. There are four candidates: Busan, Odesa, Riyadh and Rome.
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