Future Ecology Designed

Sustainable design theory manifested in products, infrastructure, and graphic representation. A utopian glimpse of a future New Zealand where environmental considerations are of tantamount importance, and society is designed to accommodate the native ecosystem.

We need some sort of working title for this venture. I know you don't want to restrain thinking, but we are getting more specific now- it would be useful to have a point of contact with other parties in terms of collaboration, sponsorship etc. Perhaps 'FEcology Associates' is a bad idea? (Grin).... Just to make up a few cards, letterheads etc.

Furthermore, I will be up on Easter Sunday, can we meet for a working day on Easter Monday (17th of April)? It would be nice to really make some progress. I will be in AKL for a week or so.

Elbe Philharmonic tent

I realy like your concept of 'nesting' over and onto existing structures. I just found this new landmark building going up in Hamburg. An interesting approach of litterally building on the old; I like how it seems to grow out of the existing warehouse but still presents itself as a seperate entity seemlingly floating over it.
Very unlike the Auckland Imax which failed horribly trying to do this.

"The historic warehouse building is set to become Hamburg’s new cultural landmark
A tent-like superstructure, sheathed in glass, will house two concert auditoriums, apartments and a hotel with a wellness centre."

Hafencity Hamburg, via Core77

la Biennale di Venezia

The Architectural theme for la Biennale di Venezia has been announced- Interesting.

Nesting Spiders as Architecture

Thanks for the reply to the last post. This sketchbook page illustrates a moment of Eureka I had a few days ago in response to Baumraum.

My idea was one of architectural metaphor, inspired by the nests spiders build in rushes and long grass. A series of vertical steel ‘rushes’ would be installed in and around existing structures, within which greenhouses and living quarters would be positioned. Linkages between these structures could be interesting, especially with the apparent lack of defined borders. Wind turbine generation would be set into the highest steel beams.

New buildings could also be built as a sort of plinth for the steel rushes, as obviously rectangular-plan buildings are more space efficient, the rushes and spider nest structures breaking the monolithic form.

I am wary of using trees as a long-term support for structures. This is both in terms of damage to the tree itself, and stresses placed on the structure due to tree movement. There would still be a large area for planting of trees within and around the steel rushes, so the impression of a treehouse would be retained.

I saw this as a fairly chaotic system of evolving urban dwelling, set around a central core- interesting to know cognitive resonance is alive and well. I hope you can interpret the sketches; something more legible is to come.

By the way, I found the Baumraum link through an article on o2sustainability. However, I loved the poetry of Baumraum, for the simple expediment that they seem to answer a desire for childhood play in a residential structure, while still providing a serious means of dwelling. And the form of their treehouses was exquisite.


Absolutely stunning. Beautiful.

C2C House

The Cradle to Cradle house is a very good application of the water cycles I was theorising. I also particularly love the ventilation system, and it's use of passive aerodynamics- in fact most of the cyclical nature of the design is indeed passive, and self-stabilised.

The house is obviously designed for a context where space is not an overriding issue, and therefore the operational requirements differ somewhat from our challenge. However, it is encouraging to see a more concrete example of the general water systems I hope to look at, and one executed so beautifully.

Electricty from spinach extract? I don't know if photosynthesis works like that. Unless you convert the biomass to energy, although that would mean constantly replanting. Hmmmm....

Modular Housing

Here is a link to the Sybarite Modular House I mentioned yesterday, posted over at Inhabit. Modular buildings such as this present a very effective economy of scale to work with, but what really appeals to me is the ability to add/subtract structure with relative ease.

If a basic landscape could be established (or re-established) for a particular Sup>urb, then modular apartments could be progressively added as the landscape gains resilience. Being modular, the whole conglomeration would not require monolithic rectangular buildings so sunlight to the natural landscape could be retained more effectively. This also works in with ideas I had about migrating cities. The challenge would be to avoid the homogenised appearance of many 'plug-in' apartments. Fundamentally what I am steering towards is a modular system, but taking advantage of central vertical farming practices.

And so the in-head design laboratory powers up. There will be an angle to take with this, where all the elements work out- I think again it is best to look for natural inspiration. An idea I had last night was to look at how spiders build nurseries in long grass, for example....

Biodiversity, basic interface


I am presently fairly uncertain as to the particular details of this interaction- a lot would rely on the physical layout of the structure. I envisage that within the Sup>urb, each apartment will have its own small greenhouse area. As this will receive sunlight and water directly from the environment, as well as irrigation from the water supply if necessary, it should be mainly self-sustaining. Each apartment could possibly have a small tank to retrieve rainwater too, decentralising water in a similar manner to the decentralisation of electricity. The plants within the greenhouses would be food crops, not necessarily native.

Each apartment would have a composting system, to return nutrients back into the greenhouse growing areas. Any excess biomass could be sent to a section where it would be converted into energy again, to be used by the Sup>urb to complement the de-centralised generators.

For the shared public spaces within the Sup>urb, light native forest would be planted. This would further manage the water resource, acting as a filter while sustaining the flora. Sculptural water installations could be combined with the forest, embodying the theories of re-energised water as postulated by Steiner, for example. There would be a catchment area at the end of the process where water would be pumped back to apartments. Grey water would be recycled where possible, otherwise pumped into a separate lake where it could evaporate and rejoin the cycle. As the soil beneath the forested area matures, larger trees could be inserted, and native birds brought in to restore an ecosystem.

Therefore, there are two major cycles within the Sup>urb biodiversity system- Nutrients and Water.

I would be really interested to hear your thoughts on this, Nilut. I remember you had relatives who were devotees of the flowform principals, and of course there is a lot of Agrobiology here too. I need to really research some of the principals here further.


A brilliant quote attributed to Henry Ford

'It is better to use carbohydrates, rather than hydrocarbons'


These Solar Pyramids are interesting.

I have a vested interest in creating a flourishing tropical zone within Sup>urbs. It is because I have always loved these beautiful creatures.

Elements of Interaction.

The Sup>urb network will consist of elements of personal interaction. I like the idea of having a connection to warmth and shelter (Energy and Structure), a connection to movement (Transit), and a connection to sustenance and health (Biodiversity).

The network will be provided with input from the perspective of an individual, forecasting overall population movement. Each of the three elements will also be in constant autonomous communication via data collection points, to ensure correlation of the overall network. Symbiotic relationships between elements will be explored subsequently.

Each element will provide users with an interface at practical points of contact, where variables and relevant system operational detail is displayed. These interfaces will be interactive on a personal level, augmented by publically viewable displays of the overall system stasis.


Energy and Structure.

The residential system interface must comprise information, with facility for function adjustment where necessary, in three basic areas- energy input, energy use, and energy output. Each of these areas will have both primary, visual information, and secondary, adjustable information. Note that in the case of Sup>urb residents, the allotted stream is allocated after all energy requirements of the overall structure have been met first, including that of internal Transit and Biodiversity systems.

Energy Input

Primary Information:

-Actual electricity stream received from generators one, two and three, and if applicable the grid, and biogas production.

Secondary Information:

-Current performance of individual generators with technical specifications, and if applicable, current location.
-Projected performance of generators, taking into account climate condition forecasts, and migratory patterns of generators.
-Sup>urb specific, but possibly applicable to other situations: production details of biogas from organic waste. (Link: Biodiversity).
-Next half yearly fee, breakdown of costing thus far, projected additions to costing, date due. If this is within a Sup>urb, then this is referred to the body corporate payments, with KwH bought and sold from the grid also taken into account.
-Current dynamic price to buy KwH from the grid with market projections.
-KwH bought from grid, accounting for dynamic price when bought, added to half-yearly fee.
-Information on generation shares held, contact details to discuss addition/subtraction of shares, or data on percentage of Sup>urb energy percentage held.

Energy Use

Primary Information:

-Total electricity use of residence.
-Power cell level.

Secondary Information:

-Breakdown of use, with recognition of the loads required by various devices. This would include the operation of the resident’s own internal hydroponics (Link: Biodiversity). The greater food production capacity of the Sup>urb will have electricity distributed to it before streams are allocated.
-Possibility of controlling individual devices through above overview.
-Scheduling of high-load tasks, in particular charging a vehicle (Link: Transit).
-Proportion of electricity stream deposited directly into power cell.

Energy Output

Primary Information:

-Electricity returned to grid.

Secondary Information:

-Current dynamic selling price of KwH to grid, with market projections.
-KwH sold to the grid, to be rebated from half-yearly fee according to dynamic price when bought.

All the categories of primary information are directly related, and would suit representation through the sculptural concept of abstracted form. This would be more logical to read at a glance, and provide a beautiful sculpture as interface.

Major Relationship, Primary Information.

Overall electricity consumption <–-> Overall generated stream (supported by individual generator performance).

Secondary Relationship, Primary Information.

Electricity returned to grid <-–> Power cell level.

Of course, both these relationships are themselves related.

The secondary elements of information would require a more complex interface, and one which allowed a degree of interaction. Some form of touch screen would perhaps be the most useful solution. There are many interrelationships between various items of secondary information. For example, the proportion of electricity sold back to the grid would relate to the dynamic selling price of KwH to grid, and the market projections would allow a decision to be made as to whether to keep charging the power cell, or begin diverting surplus energy into the grid to take advantage of greater returns. These interrelationships must be identified and added into the user process.



The transit interface will mainly deal with interaction through public modes, and where other contact with infrastructure occurs, such as in public car parks. The interface will be similar in operation to a GPS based navigation system, where a starting location and destination are both entered to determine a route. The output will then follow with both public and private alternatives or a combination thereof, showing associated costs. Billing to an account will be centralised across all public modes and car parks to a council department. Routes will also be predicted according to real-time demand and forecasting based on historical use, these statistics presented in context on a map display.

The fundamental idea is that the user will be responsible for the actual energy cost of the trip. When a route requirement is entered, the variety of alternatives will of course show public route schedules that can be used, with their associated billing, but where a private vehicle is to be used, the system will work out the actual cost in terms of recharging/ refuelling to be recouped (Link: Energy and Structure) and parking fees (which differ according to whether one parks in their own urban node or a further one).

The system will take into account adjustable bus stops, so that the best compromise can be found for a bus with regard to meeting the needs of the greatest number of passengers. If a bus is required to divert further, then the ticket price will be increased proportionately. This will mean either waiting for an alternative route which brings a bus slightly closer, or walking to a more practical stop. The actual deviation will be confined to levels which do not cause significant inconvenience, but the result should be fewer buses carrying well under capacity. The system could be rigged with a number of varying bus sizes for further efficiency, a hybrid of shuttle buses and conventional buses tied to route areas.

Ticketing would be processed on the conclusion of each modal leg, and because the whole system would be digitally automated through the interface, actual costs would be more easily represented through fairly small increments of currency. The account would be paid according to the user’s preference: daily, weekly, monthly etc.

The Interface would guide the user to stops via a moving map display, also showing real-time wider population movement on request, as well as the locations of related public transport vehicles. When private vehicles are being used, the moving map would be transferable to a Head Up Display unit, giving directions to the driver. Route alternatives involving parking private vehicles in car parks would take into consideration car park capacity, actually allocating the vehicle a park to which it would be guided. The parking cost would relate to the size of the vehicle (flexible parking spaces) and preference would first be given to the forecasted requirements of vehicles in the same urban area as the node, which would not endure parking costs, as the assumption would be that the users had parked to take advantage of the light TGV at the node.

Routes specified for private vehicles will of course be adjusted to allow for traffic flow. When public transport routes are altered as above, it is of course the user requesting the diversion that covers the cost. The ticket for each user will always remain at the initial price quoted under the alternative route suggestions.


The Loblolly House

A modular home, pre fabricated to prevent construction work on-site that would damage the immediate environment. It has a certain beauty reminiscent of Toyo Ito, too.


I'm slightly dubious about overtly-automated private vehicles. I would definitely like to see a greater connectedness to the wider transit system for personal transport, so one may see just what an effect this mode has on the movements of the popuation. I also think electronic intervention will be important to assist in enhancing already extant driver abilities, for instance with proximity control, and to actively warn of impending trouble.

However, I think we need to be wary of gimmicky devices that detract from the idea that every unit of effort be as simple as possible for a given operational requirement. Such interventionary measures should be as passive as possible, dealing with prevention many steps ahead rather than flooding the driving experience with information overload. This would mainly involve placing focus on the driving environment outside the car.

I also think that commuter vehicles should be made as spartan as possible, simply because they are so focused. Their very beauty is in the intrinsic simplicity with which they operate- the Fiat 500 will always be an ideally adapted city transportation medium.

Interestingly, this example of built-in resilience might possibly remind you of your childhood, Nilut.

(P.S. X-Ray-ing people via their seats would be excellent for the environment, insofar as it would turn the human population sterile after repeat use....)

Automobile Tech

Quick info dump on cars that drive themselves and how your car may someday respond to your mood.

Ambi-tainment Focused on making time behind the wheel more visually and aurally enjoyable, innovations like transparent A-frames (the outside structure of the vehicle) that alter space perception, create appealing alternatives to actual larger vehicles such as multi-problematic SUVs. Differing from infotainment, Woodgate's looking to windows that darken at the press of a button, modular systems, OLEDs to change where lights are put in the car, "drive by wire" digital driving that creates space by eliminating steering columns, and zonal controls, like acoustic baffling, to control sounds and even odors.

Immersive Technologies These ambient benefits are the result of what Woodgate terms "immersive technologies"—features that involve drivers and passengers in the driving experience, and thus the technologies themselves, in new ways.

Innovative FamiliarityImmersive technologies require design that takes the entire driving experience (namely how drivers interact with existing designs) into consideration, meaning that existing spaces (like mirrors and dashboards) will provide different types of imagery. Colored guide lines or dots that are integrated into mirrors are one example of ways convergent technologies may show up in future models.

Driving Utopias X-ray based seat technologies that adapt to driver stress levels and physical forms or automatic adjustments according to weather and traffic conditions, mean that commuters faced with increasingly complex driving conditions will at least find the overall experience more rewarding, if not vastly safer, more convenient, and more comfortable.

Via Coolhuntings

Vertical Farming

Vertical Farms is an utterly fascinating concept.

It is conceptually very, very similar to the self-supporting Superurban pockets (Supurbs) I mentioned to you -my concept would involve basic horticultural practices as part of a wider holistic living area, involving human waste (both biological, and that resulting from general activity) in the renewable nutrient cycle, but I plan an attempt to divert from the general 'apartment block' layout. Even the integrated wind-turbines here are similar to my intended route.

Fundamentally within a given structure, my idea is for a more centralised food production area, staggered to acheive sufficient density but receiving greater natural sunlight (see page of sketched out ideas, more to be scanned). This would figuratively be a hidden valley, with living space comprising the surrounding ring of cliffs (Think scaled up habitat version of the Colosseum). I like the idea of returning to native plants, and looking at the possibilty of nutrition- although crops can be terraced for convenience, and layering as in the vertical farm concept would not be an issue for various species.


Here is a facinating aviation concept I mentioned earlier. Although, it is probably not quite within the scope of our current project; but relevent from a New Zealand <> Rest-of-World perspective.

"Frank Heyl's project ‘Aeolus’ is a second-generation supersonic airliner with an Oblique Flying Wing configuration that enables it to sweep the entire wing to reduce drag to one tenth of that of a delta wing. The interchangeable cabins will improve the turnaround time: While the arriving cabins are being unloaded from the aircraft the departing ones are already waiting, fully boarded. From the reduced flight time through optimised turnaround and 'supersonic over dry land capabilities' to the savings in fuel and operation cost Aeolus represents a true revolution in civil aviation."

Via Car design news & Via Spiegel (warning: german overload)

Glider Update

A quick digital mock-up, describing the basic layout for a three-seat powered glider.

The rear two passengers would be on the centre of gravity, so any pax combination could be taken. The propeller would be aimed backwards towards the rear wing, supplying lift but avoiding fuselage drag, and folding/retracting while in glider mode to save drag.

The fuselage is comparable in size to that of a conventional glider, which gives an idea of the scale I am intending here.


If 'suburban' describes urban sprawl, and is abbreviated to 'the suburbs', would a project dealing with restricting urban spaces unto themselves define a type of 'superurban' landscape? would this be the 'supurbs'?


From an exhibition perspective, Changex looks interesting- There is a vaguely similar intent here, and it is a good exercise in looking at the logistical and financial contortions we will face.

'CHANGEX is an annual exhibition of student art + design works that address issues of sustainability, environmental responsibility, social equity and community. Now in its third year, the exhibition will be complemented by an expanded series of events of interest to young designers, professionals, and community members alike.'

It is nice to see such an initiative in our general socio/geographic area too.


Hello, once again great work on all the posts! Appologies for not keeping up at the moment, but having to do some heavy time management. Did manage to get some thoughts down which I thought ill post. It's basically a start to the direction/approach I am thinking of taking on this project. (will be adding/editing here when I get a quieter moment..)

Funny how you had some thoughts on air travel. A couple of days ago I came accross quite an interesting concept that I have been meaning to post. Maybe not quite related to what we are doing, but cool nonetheless. Will dig it out, have it archived somewhere.

Glider Prototype

Proof of concept glider with a 560mm wingspan.

I quickly mocked up the basic layout of the joined-wing configuration I played around with at a young age. The new glider flies well, especially considering the airfoil section is rectangular! Haven't had a chance to fly it outside yet due to 80kmh gusting wind, but it displays good performance inside. The most effective centre of gravity is marked by a cross on the fuselage- it is quite far back, so it should allow more efficient interior packaging, as well as enable a more effective hull design on amphibious versions.

Another thought occured to me while making this. Could a series of full-size aircaft be built that mainly glide to their destination, making use of small electric engines to constantly adjust back to altitude? They would be slow but very efficient, and could even be lifted up to a starting altitude by helium 'tugs', if light enough.

Ground Effect

Related to the issues of aviation, is a flying hybrid of aircraft and boats. Ground effect craft are designed to fly close enough to the water surface that a natural air cushion forms under their wings- thus enhancing lift, reducing drag, and allowing for significant gains in efficiency.

Longitudinal stability has been a problem in the past, but various modellers have gone some way to solving the problem by locating the centre of thrust along the aerodynamic centreline- I have my own take on how this could be achieved.

The major issue in small ground effect craft is the drag induced by the water surface just before take-off. Locating thrust so it is directed beneath the wings, enhancing the air cushion at slow speeds, is a solution that helps force the hull up out of the water.

In Charge

Charge, a weblog on the future of energy. Entries are written by Daniel C. Sweeney Ph.D, and appear to be the most realistic and informative overall studies I have yet found. The writer is in fact completing a report on the feasibility of the much lauded hydrogen economy (or lack thereof, as it appears) so is very well versed in energy technology. Many topics of interest are investigated with a faintly sardonic vigour, including all the transport options available. My choice of Li-ion and electric/electric hybrid vehicles over fuell cell power is vindicated by much of the writing.

Air Travel?

At Worldchanging, an interesting overview of some new battery technologies on the horizon. Fascinating reading.

I have been in infatuated with aircraft since before I could talk- My grandfather navigated De Havilland Mosquitos in WWII, and I have grown up surrounded by all things aviatory. I even made a flying model glider at the age of 10 with joined wings, before I knew such an idea was being tested. However, current air transport is absolutely horrendous, and could get worse.

A possibilty within this collaboration would be to look at air travel. Domestic flights really don't appear to have a future within current thinking- TGVs are far more effective, can be electrified, and don't inject harmful emissions directly where they hurt the biosphere the most.

International travel, however, will also need to undergo a total revolution. Teleconferencing and enhanced communications will help avoid business related travel, but what of holiday travellers?

The idea I love most is to re-establish overseas holidays as a massively anticipated, once every decade event, with the journey an amazing experience in itself. While large ships, possibly propelled in part by wind, would be ideal, there will always be a market for air travel. Aircraft will need to fly at lower altitude more slowly, using more efficient propulsion and aerodynamics, so journey times would be longer. There is potential for airlines to turn the flight itself into a package holiday with stop-overs en route, a la the golden age of flying boats. (This also avoids turning over land area to airport runways)

Interestingly, the thinking of my 10 year old self inventing the glider has importance here. The idea of joined wings came to me when I read that a wing is ultimately efficient if it has no tip. That is, a wing inside a wind tunnel, with both tips joined to the walls, has miniscule amounts of aerodynamic drag with respect to lift. The joined wing glider was highly stable, and had a low wing loading, but at the same time had significantly reduced drag- perfect for a slow speed, long range transport.

Ecocycle Layout

A quick CAD mock-up to sort out the packaging and dimensions of the 2-seater. It will have a long wheelbase of around 2600mm, but this should give high stability at speed and capacity for two 99th percentile sized males. The vehicle will be low however at around a metre high, and in the vicinity of 600mm wide- I have plans involving parking where low and narrow may conceivably be more beneficial than short.... There is ample space for a Li-ion battery, mounted low to keep the centre of gravity down.

Living Skins - Architecture as Interface

Some more on interactive Architecture over at Adobe Think Tank.

"What if a sign did not simply tout new movies, sodas, and celebrity babies in one-way feeds, but instead revealed something unique about the building, its occupants, or its environment? What if the building could respond, in real time, to the movement of people, the weather, or the whims of bystanders or behind-the-scenes artists? Digital designers and architects have begun working together to move beyond the facade and give buildings a living skin."

I plan to explore this route a little further, looking at the whole urban environment and taking it a little further than just a building facade.
For people to improve, care and evolve their environment there is a need for them to be intrinsically aware of its state and their effect on it. How about an environment (i'm thinking a buildinf/city) that is alive in a way. It shows us how it feels, what its doing and what effect we as inhabitants are having on it.

This would mean more than just a video skins and light installations. One example was the building covered in tiny colour changing LEDs dependinng on its sun exposure. > See Habitat Hotel. (also more info here: http://www.interactivearchitecture.org :: also some other great posts on there)

One issue with large format video/light skins seems to be their general usage at the moment, and the danger of them turning into just another billboard. "one of the common problems of giant screens recast as building surfaces is that their content is utterly disconnected from the architecture and the function of the building"

Via Core 77
PDF of article

Another look at Lithium-ion

There are already products on the market which prove the viability of this energy source. While the initial prices are high enough to effectively rule these out to the wider population (US$9500-12000 over the base Prius), with further investment and R&D the cost should fall. It is worthwhile instead to view these products as working 'proof of concepts'. The two major contenders are Hymotion and EDrive. What these systems do is add a Li-ion energy source which allows the vehicle to be plugged in, enabling the vehicle to run purely on electricity within a commuting envelope, with the IC engine as capacity back-up after battery range is up.

The exciting fact is that, with the EDrive system, at speeds of under 55kph a range of about 56km is possible. The Hymotion Li-ion polymer pack, which simply fits into the boot and is only 10cm high, allows 50km of driving at under 55kph. A good article with a comparison chart is available on Green Car Congress. Li-ion polymer batteries are up to 20% as powerful as equivalent weight Li-ion batteries. They involve adding gelled polymer electrolytes in the Lithium metallic Oxide cathode, enhancing conductivity.

It is worth noting that these specifications are for a 5 seat vehicle, with an IC engine, built in a conventional contemporary manner. As the Hymotion pack only weighs 72.5kg, the unit could easily be fitted solo into a small dedicated commuter vehicle. The cost would be significantly higher than conventional scooters, even after foreseen falls, so the vehicle would need to have a perception of quality and benefit in line with excellent small cars like the Fiat Panda or Honda Jazz- note that running costs would be far lower due to a more effcient conversion of the energy source and less mechanical complexity. Range and top speed could be increased significantly over a plug-in Prius, as weight and drag would be drastically reduced.

Li-ion batteries contain metals which can all be either recycled, or have safe disposal systems already in place. 12-15% will be Nickel, although safe production practices have been established in Japan and the USA, and it is worth recycling from used batteries. Cobalt (12-20%) is also economic to recycle, and Manganese (10-15%) and Iron (4.7-25%) are safe to dispose of. Overall, Li-ion batteries have less environmental impact than the materials required in fuel cells.

Loremo LS

This is along the lines of what I intend my 4-6 seater to be. Ultra light, compact, devoid of needless accesories or gadgets, excellent aerodynamically, of high build quality and abjectly beautiful.

The base Loremo LS weighs only 450kg, seats 2+2 and cruises at up to 160kph- all while consuming a maximum 1.5l of diesel per 100km. It is powered by a 2 cylinder turbodiesel rated at 15kW. This gives fairly sluggish acceleration, at 20 seconds to 100kph, but the benefits far outweigh anything as crass as straightline speed. It is also worth remembering it is mid-engined, and extremely light, so should handle like a Lotus. Safety meets all European standards. The drag coefficient is very low, at 0.20

A faster GT version will make 100kph in 9 seconds, go on to 220kph and still use only 2.7 litres per 100kph.

This car has enourmous potential, and thankfully the styling lives up to all the promise- sleek, modern, and really very attractive. I really hope it works.

From here....

Further refinement of my plan of action- every time I go out for coffee I add a few more ideas. I have fundamentally decided where I am going, looking at a variety of vehicles at different levels (evolutionary adaptation to environmental niches), the levels of transit infrastructure they operate on (environment itself), the energy infrastructure that provides for both the vehicles, their infrastructure and the city as a whole (food chain, cycle of materials), and how this infrastructure enhances and relates to the natural envrionment, particularly in the inner city.

I have also decided that it would be interesting to look at the idea of forested and naturally enhanced areas as 'transit routes', with a flow of biodiversity through the city relating to the natural environment as it changes- ie. from in-land areas to coastal. This would have to be protected from human activity- hardier birdlife already in the city such as Tui, Kereru etc. would flourish quite happliy, but vulnerable wildlife with particular requirements, especially nocturnal animals such as Kiwi, Ruru etc., would be given sanctuaries and aviaries isolated from already reduced city light and noise pollution. There could also be a chance to engage in rehabilitation of rare and endangered species like Kokako, Takahe, Black Robins etc, as well as other fauna like Tuatara. This would be publically visible, thus enhancing conservation awareness.