The Urban Mountains is a series of environmental friendly architecture projects by BMT. Three vertical green high-rise condo buildings located at the Hsinchu High Speed Rail special district is BMT’s answer to the rapid urbanization of the area. Concentration of population caused green landscapes and wildlife habitats to disappear. By planting trees on artificial grounds and utilizing split-level balcony to plant trees onto higer floors, the vegetation created a layer of green skin on the architecture. The first building of The Urban Mountains is completed in 2014 and has a green coverage ratio of 150%. Its sister buildings that followed: The Urban Mountains II (2018) and The Urban Mountains III (2019) achieved green coverage ratios of 218% and 267% respectively. The Urban Mountains series realized the philosophy of “giving back more greenery for every land developed.”
Imagine every high-rise building in the city is a mountain. During the planning and designing phase of The Urban Mountains, the buildings are envisioned to be a mountain, subsurface levels are the valleys, and the roof tops are the peaks. At the early stage of planning, BMT initiated field research in a 10-kilometer radius around the construction site. The field research collected information of the local weather, ecosystem, plants, and local culture. This information allowed BMT to select suitable trees for the vision of the urban mountains. The research also gave The Urban Mountains a very clear understanding of the local land. At the same time, BMT designed a rainwater collection system to create an ecological waterscape for the restoration of wildlife, making The Urban Mountains the only community in the Hsinchu High Speed Rail special district that can hear frogs croaking.
After residents moved into their condos, BMT initiated a Five-Year Companionship program that invites residents to learn about the ecosystem and the environment through regular landscape maintenance classes and events. Residents can learn the basics on how to take care of plants, making The Urban Mountains a truly ecologically minded community. According to the statistics, The Urban Mountains have created nearly two hectares of forest and green space for the city, which translates to 1,500 tons of carbon fixed. At the same time, The Urban Mountains can hold 2,700 metric tons of water content, which can serve to regulate cloudbursts in extreme climate. Overall, The Urban Mountains series have responded to the problem of Taiwan’s concentrated urban population, and attempted to provide a solution to alleviate the issue of urban heat island. In BMT’s development thinking, this series is viewed as a prototype for future city dwelling, and is one of the two solutions to urban settlement.