July 29, 2014
Architecture Nature

Designed by Marks Barfield Architects, the Walkway takes visitors 18m high into the tree canopy for a birdseye view of Kew. It provides insights into the special role of trees in our breathing planet and gives an intimate view of a deciduous woodland and its inhabitants from within the tranquillity of the leaves. Assembled from 12 modular trusses, it is interconnected by 10 circular ‘node’ platforms to form a 200m loop through woodland originally designed by Capability Brown. A classroom-sized platform provides space for school groups of up to 35, and a bench to enable visitors to rest and enjoy longer views towards the Palm House. Design inspiration was drawn from the Fibonacci sequence found repeatedly in nature. Components were fabricated in Weathering Steel off site to minimise disruption within the sensitive environment.

The ‘Rhizotron’, entered through an apparent crack in the ground, will be the UK’s only walk-in viewing area illustrating the rich world of tree root biology.


Photos © Peter Durant