Would we give them the same respect we (presumably) give our human neighbors?
That's the provocative question at the heart of this project by Vo Trong Nghia Architects. The Vietnamese firm has an office in Ho Chi Minh City, where rapid urbanization—the country's urban areas are growing at 3.4 percent a year—has led to a quick decline in urban greenery. Compared to megacities in China, that rate isn't stunning, but it's especially discordant for a city built in the middle of a rain forest. Today, only .25 percent of the land in Ho Chi Minh City is covered in vegetation.
That number motivated Vo Trong Nghia Architects to build House for Trees, a series of large-scale, concrete, homes that also zone, protect, and draw attention to a five of Ho Chi Minh City's endangered city trees.