The Insect Hotel is an artificial shelter and a hibernating place for insects and arachnids made with natural materials. It consists of a divided structure of several sections with nesting facilities. Vulnerable species (such as the solitary bee) can settle into it to develop and reproduce in a comfortable and secure space. The Hotel is a practical and economical way to help preserve the endangered insects due to human activities like farming and deforestation. Many of this species play a key role in the ecosystem for its pollinating activity and for being parasite predators. This project aims to embrace the ‘Biophilic Cities’ movement (http://biophiliccities.org/).
The materials composing the Insect Hotel and the main species living in it are:
Level 1 (Stone): Spiders, beetles, bees, firefly, tapeworm, crickets, grasshoppers, praying mantis.
Level 2 (Ceramic, low density ceramic block): Solitary bees (perforated ceramic brick filled with a mix of soil and hay).
Level 3 (Wood, perforated pine trunks): Solitary bees –Osmia, Anthidium sp., halíctids and Odynerus (perforated tree trunks in between 2 mm and 10 mm and bamboo canes)-; beetle, centipede and woodlouse larva (dead wood).
Level 4 (Organic Mantle): Spiders, ants, beetles (dried pine cones); beetles, centipedes and wasps, hoverflies and flies, blackberry stems, rosebushes, raspberries and elderflower.
The Insect Hotel solidifies biodiversity in Parc Vallmora. The quality and health of the park improves due to the butterflies, bees, dragonflies and other insects that are beneficial to the plants. The presence of daytime butterflies is a good indicative of this. Also, this is a great pedagogical tool as it allows children and adults to observe closely the life cycle of some creatures which are difficult to find in nature. In the same way, it also allows collecting data about some little known species for scientific purposes. Moreover, the Insect Hotel helps to preserve endangered species and improves the quality and biodiversity of the park. Therefore, this project is an ideal city park attraction.
Entrant office name: Batlle i Roig Arquitectura, SLP
Role of the entrant in the project: Architect
Other designers involved in the design of landscape: –
Project location (Street, City, Country): Parc Vallmora, El Masnou, Barcelona (Spain)
Design year: 2016
Year Built: 2017
Link to Video “Insect Hotel at Parc Vallmora”, by batlleiroig: https://vimeo.com/262236774