St. Louis Architect Wants to Build "New Arches" That Save the Earth and Help You Lose Weight

Categories: Arts

Solar Science Center

Michael Jantzen

This is a science center that's basically made out of science. A 160-foot-tall cone-shape structure has a surface of photovoltaic solar cells that track the sun's movement throughout the day, which powers the entire science center.

Michael Jantzen
Interior view of the solar science center.

There would also be a large LED screen in the center of the structure that would show images and broadcast sounds that are relevant to sun, such as this image of a solar flare.

Michael Jantzen

"My Solar Science Center would be dedicated to the science of the sun, and to the technologies being developed to utilize the energy from the sun," Jantzen says, adding that there is a "great interest in the city in the sciences and a growing interest in the potential use of alternative energy."

Stair-Scape Bridge

Michael Jantzen

Jantzen's work obviously aims to promote exercise, and this bridge definitely does that. It has three separate sections: one ramp for people on bikes or skateboards and two made of undulating stairs. The stair design might add a few minutes to the walk, but it will also help burn a few more calories.

Michael Jantzen


Michael Jantzen

The Eco-Tower is a 120-foot observational structure that collects energy from the sun and wind, which powers the free Wi-Fi that would be available.

"Conceptually, the Eco-Tower is a kind of urban tree that produces and stores energy, gathers and stores rainwater, produces oxygen and provides a unique place for people to gather together while they exercise by climbing the spiral staircase," Jantzen says.

Michael Jantzen

"Aesthetically, the design of the structure comes from the idea of the integrated wind turbine at the top, spinning the shape of the tower into concentric rings that form the vertical spaces below and direct the energy flow down into the surrounding community," he adds.

In addition to his designs for public art/architecture, Jantzen's innovative home designs have been internationally recognized. You can see more of his work on his website.

Follow Ray Downs on Twitter at @RayDowns. E-mail the author at

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