The ultimate space saver! Cairo’s vertical forest will be the first of its kind in Africa.

At XtraSpace, we love innovative uses of space. Vertical forests are among the best, creating green spaces in densely populated areas without taking up a lot of valuable real estate.


Now Africa is getting its first vertical forest, with buildings in Cairo that will host hundreds of trees and thousands of shrubs.


vertical forest

Image source: Stefano Boeri Architetti


Africa’s first vertical forest

The buildings that will support the vertical forest will be three new cube-shaped blocks measuring 30 metres wide and 30 metres deep. The buildings will house apartments and other types of residences in Cairo’s new administrative capital.


vertical forest

Image source: Stefano Boeri Architetti


Each apartment will open onto a balcony that will have a selection of plant species either indigenous or suited to the North African climate.


Overall, there will be 350 different types of trees and over 14,000 different shrub species. The total green area will span over 3600 square metres.


vertical forest

Image source: Stefano Boeri Architetti


The abundance of greenery will have the capacity to absorb 7 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. It will produce 8 tonnes of oxygen in the same period.


This may have a significant, positive effect on local pollution levels.


Worldwide, vertical forests may play a role in reducing cities’ overall carbon footprints. In turn, this may help slow down climate change.


And that’s to say nothing of how gorgeous the buildings will look. The real draw for occupants is being able to live in a lush, green space, while keeping all of the conveniences of city living.


Other famous vertical forests

Vertical forests aren’t new. However, they’re becoming more popular as cities get denser and land is increasingly sought after.


Below we offer introductions to just a few other amazing vertical forests around the world, both completed and proposed.


Caixa Forum Museum – Milan, Italy

vertical garden

Image source: Green Roofs


The vertical garden on the side of the Caixa Forum Museum in Milan is made up of 300 different species and 15,000-17,000 individual plants.


Le Nouvel Towers – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

vertical gardens

Image source: Vertical Garden Patrick Blank


Le Nouvel Towers in Kuala Lumpur are strung with a grid of stainless-steel cables that allow vines to creep over the buildings’ glass façades. The vertical garden includes 243 different plant species.


Bosco Verticale – Milan, Italy

vertical garden

Image source: Arch Daily


Bosco Verticale consists of two towers that host 480 large trees, 300 small trees, 5000 shrubs and 11,000 covering plants – the equivalent of 20,000 m2 of forest and undergrowth.


The Rainbow Tree – Cebu, Philippines

vertical garden

Image source: Amazing Architecture


The Rainbow Tree is a proposed mixed-use residential building adorned with 30,000 different plants, shrubs and tropical trees to appear reminiscent of an actual Rainbow Tree.


Liuzhou Forest City – Southern China

forest city

Image source: CNN


This forest city concept would result in a 342-acre, self-contained neighbourhood that would have more than 70 buildings covered in 40,000 trees and almost a million plants.


Advantages of urban greening

Worldwide, many cities are supporting greater urban greening. This is in keeping with general awareness about climate change. It also reflects popular demand for better, more eco-friendly and more humane urban design.


Among the advantages of urban green spaces are:

  • better air quality
  • greater urban biodiversity
  • help in preventing flooding.
  • mitigation of climate change
  • improved heat and cold regulation, without air conditioning
  • natural insulation of building interiors
  • absorption of city noise
  • better mental wellness of people in crowded urban areas.

As far as we’re aware, South Africa doesn’t yet have a vertical forest comparable to those being developed in countries like Italy and China. We hope Cairo will lead the way, with Africa’s first vertical forest!


At XtraSpace, we don’t build vertical forests – but we do aim to offer an affordable solution to modern space constraints. We offer convenient, secure self-storage and vehicle storage, on flexible terms. Contact us for more information or browse to find a branch near you.

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