Gardens by the Bay / Grant Associates

  • 17 Jul 2012
  • Featured Landscape Public Facilities Selected Works
Courtesy of

Architects: Grant Associates
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Courtesy of Grant Associates

Cooled Conservatories Design: Wilkinson Eyre Architects

Gardens by the Bay is one of the largest garden projects of its kind in the world.  Ultimately, the site will total 101 hectares comprising three distinct gardens – Bay South, Bay East and Bay Central.  Located on reclaimed land in Singapore’s new downtown at Marina Bay, the site will provide a unique leisure destination for local and international visitors.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

The project is an integral part of Singapore’s “City in a Garden” vision, designed to raise the profile of the city globally whilst showcasing the best of horticulture and garden artistry.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

A Great British Collaboration
Following an international design competition, a team led by landscape architecture firm Grant Associates was appointed in 2006 by the National Parks Board of Singapore to masterplan Bay South Garden, the first and largest of the three planned gardens at Gardens by the Bay.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

Alongside lead designers Grant Associates, the British design team for Bay South includes Wilkinson Eyre (architects); Atelier Ten (environmental design consultants); Atelier One (structural engineers); Land Design Studio (museum and visitor center designers) and Thomas Matthews (communication designers).

Courtesy of Grant Associates

A Fusion of Nature and Technology
Taking inspiration from the form of the orchid, Grant Associates’ masterplan is a rich fusion of nature, technology and environmental management. Stunning architectural structures are combined with a wide variety of horticultural displays, daily light and sound shows, lakes, forests, event spaces and a host of dining and retail offerings.  The whole plan has an intelligent environmental infrastructure, allowing endangered plants, which could not normally grow in Singapore to flourish, providing both leisure and education to the nation.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

Highlights of Gardens by the Bay are many and include:

Cooled Conservatories
Two giant biomes designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects – the Flower Dome (1.2 hectare) and the Cloud Forest Dome (0.8 hectare) – display plants and flowers from the Mediterranean-type climatic regions and Tropical Montane (Cloud Forest) environments and provide an all-weather “edutainment” space within the Gardens.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

Between 25 and 50 metres in height, the 18 Supertrees designed by Grant Associates are iconic vertical gardens, with emphasis placed on creating a “wow” factor through the vertical display of tropical flowering climbers, epiphytes and ferns.  At night, these canopies come alive with lighting and projected media. An aerial walkway suspended from the Supertrees offers visitors a unique perspective on the gardens.  The Supertrees are embedded with sustainable energy and water technologies integral to the cooling of the Cooled Conservatories.

Courtesy of Grant Associates

Horticultural Gardens
Two collections The Heritage Gardens and The World of Plants centre on ‘Plants and People’ and ‘Plants and Planet’. Together with mass flowering and coloured foliage landscape, they form a spectacle of colour and texture and fragrance within the Gardens, providing a mesmerising experience for visitors.


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Cite: "Gardens by the Bay / Grant Associates" 17 Jul 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 17 Sep 2014. <>


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      What are your sources for this Charles? I figured they would just use native plants that can withstand the strong winds and temperatures.

      Personally, I wanted to see a picture of this lit up a night like the renderings show.

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    I think your image credits are not 100% correct. Also, the article should credit wilkinson eyre more. Amazing and beautiful project

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    Not that I plan on being in Singapore any time soon but I would love to see this place in real life. Plants aside, which is a creative idea, the architecture is impressive.

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    Please note that ALL PLANTING is done by the National Parks Board – Grant had no say in that and certainly not the expertise to plant tropical/native plants.

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    The planting strategy (in the domes at least) was not one of native vegetation. I was just there a few days back and the Cloud Forest mostly mimics montane tropical forest as per Mt. Kinabalu in East Malaysia, while the Flower Dome is dry/mediterranean. It’s all supposed to showcase important plant species, not necessarily local ones. The Cloud Forest especially I found impressive, although since it’s not a sealed structure (intermittent hot air venting through louvres) it’d be nice to understand how the energy figures tot up vs. overall sustainability. I don’t think anything regarding this has been released…Still, an audacious and impressive thing it is.

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    I just don’t get why you would build something that looks like a tree and ‘culture’ it with local or non-local vegetation. Why not just plant the tree in the first place and let the local and non-local plants colonise it as they see fit.

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    I just came back from Singapore last week. I visited this project and I have to say that not just the tree structures and the bridge are pretty impressive. Additional to that the entire complex of the Gardens is extremely well executed, the conceptual development, details, materials and specially the effect on visitors is clearly visible. Architecture (at any scale) should not be evaluated on technicalities, numbers, area, visitors, etc. but also in the social and cultural effect. Just in case: No, I don’t work for any of the companies involved, Im not Singaporean, but I walked around the Gardens for 6 hours, and this is for sure a must if you visit Asia.

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