Sunflower Principle

Sunflower Principle

Masdar Plaza

The Masdar Plaza is the new centre of the eco-city Masdar City.

Masdar city is a planned city in the United Arab Emirates. This “city of the future” is being created 30 km in the east of Abu Dhabi, on the basis of a master plan by Foster und Partner, and is supposed to be completed in 2016. The architects of LAVA are planning a centre for this drawing board city: the Masdar Plaza, with surrounding hotels and a cinema.

Oasis meets Piazza

The draft falls back on two ideas regarding town planning: the oasis as a centre for the Arab nomads, and the typical European Piazza. The architects of LAVA were inspired by cities like Rome, Athens, and Florence: the square is the city centre, and this is where urban life takes place. The Masdar Plaza is supposed to work in the same way in the future – as a link between the surrounding hotels and shops, and as an urban meeting point. The open space is roofed by large, foldable sunshades.

Sun(flower) Protection

A temperature of 32 degrees centigrade is – unthinkable for Europeans – considered to be pleasant in Abu Dhabi. The architects intend to accomplish this value by flexible sun umbrellas, which – like sunflowers – adjust their direction according to the position of the sun. In this way, they give shade in the daytime and can be folded together at night, giving off the heat stored over the day.

The Masdar Plaza shall be shaded at 85 percent by these gigantic umbrellas. But during the hot summer months, additional measures for cooling are required. Parts of the square are actively cooled by a floor cooling. The power requirement for this cooling is met by photovoltaic cells applied to the sun umbrellas, on an area of 6.000 square metres. On an annual average, a surplus will be created that shall be fed into the public grid. But, mainly, public life takes place in the evening and at night, anyway.

Future of the planned City

The project is announced as a CO2-neutral city that is completely self-sufficient on the basis of renewable energies. The goal of the project is to make the desert state a global centre for those renewable energies. Thus, the city is supposed to become a location for universities as well. Those shall deal with the topic of ecological sustainability. The slogan of the city is: “One day all cities will be like this.” Maybe not every city, since, even in future, no objections can be made against the role models for the Masdar Plaza.


Project details


LAVA ‐ Laboratory for Visionary Architecture




31.200 m²


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tompark12's picture
tompark12 20. January 2015 - 19:38

The town will look amazing, there's nothing like it in the world right now! They should take full advantage of the solar energy and use it to cool down the buildings during the day, it will make the location even more appealing to the rest of the world. The Solar-Action panels are a great choice if they decide to do that!

prabirbanik82's picture
prabirbanik82 28. January 2015 - 9:56

The city looks marvelous and since it is a planned city the people would not have to worry about anything. Every amenity would be available to them. However, the city would no doubt include commercial buildings which would need proper water purifier system. It would be better if they get the best water quality control systems from

prabirbanik82's picture
prabirbanik82 28. January 2015 - 11:08

Building a planned city is a good idea, it would help lowering the level of wastage. However, while building your home you should also do proper planning. The same rule should be followed when you remodel your home or kitchen. For remodeling purpose you should hire The Remodelers, Inc. which offers an efficient and fast service, you can find this company at

modhuleenab's picture
modhuleenab 28. January 2015 - 12:07

The images do prove that this is a city of the future, the city authorities should consider making it a secure place for the residents too. However, those who live in the coastal areas often have to face problems due to natural calamities like flood, cyclone. But there are companies available which offer cleaning services for flood damage in Kansas City, MO.

modhuleenab's picture
modhuleenab 30. January 2015 - 8:48

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billmarket17's picture
billmarket17 19. March 2015 - 13:59

It is a lot of work to create an entire city, which will have only futuristic buildings, unique landscapes and interior designs. To succeed with this project, the architectural company must collaborate with many specialized services in construction and interior design. But, first things first, the builders must find quality construction equipments, like the ones from For certain, any crane, transfer cars, end trucks that they will buy or rent will be useful for this project.

prabirbanik82's picture
prabirbanik82 20. March 2015 - 14:00

Creating a well planned city is not a cakewalk but they have done a good job here. To create a beautiful building one should appoint a skilled and experienced contractor who can think out of the box. However, these days most materials and tools can be purchased from online places like

modhuleenab's picture
modhuleenab 21. March 2015 - 12:19

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modhuleenab's picture
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