Brief : A nature based solution developed as startup to improve urban biodiversity.

Proposal : To increase biodiversity by integrating suitable structures for insect shelter in urban play spaces, mainly using nature based materials. Thereby also educating the children about ecosystems and its importance in their most liked spaces.



PlayBug is a project focusing on creating play spaces and play equipment with nature based materials, educating children about ecosystems by increasing biodiversity in urban scenarios.

These are the EU sustainable development goals which we are catering to.

Strategy : Each kind of insect requires unique conditions for it to house itself in. Targeting children friendly insects, specific kinds of shelter are created to bring in such kind in the spaces, and hence increase the overall insect population in the vicinity.

Strategy : For maximum benefit utilization of the shelters, insectary plants are grown around and integrated with the structures. Also for a pleasant environment, aromatic plants also are grown in the landscape areas . The insects attracted to the insectary plants will also help the other nearby garden plants in their life-cycle.

Shelter sample : Ladybug Hotel

These shelters are in the form of panels which can clipped on with structures of play-spaces. A ladybug requires just 3-4 mm diameter holes to house itself. The panel base is made up of wood, with such holes. It is designed in a way, that the climber Nasturtium can grow around these spaces, which provides a very easily accessible food source (aphids) to the bugs.

Play Equipment : The idea is to create a module, which can be aggregated and modified to create various play elements like slides, climbers , tunnels ,etc.

Showing a module embedded with the ladybug panel. The insect hotel panels face the outside, which separates them from coming into the interior areas used by children.


The most optimum way market entry would be to introduce such play areas in schools which are always ready to integrate interesting ways to educate the children. Further creating these spaces in residential blocks and urban public parks can easily help increase the biodiversity.

The model fits in between the product and service based approach, as it is not just a one way systems, as there is always back and forth movement of information between the client, site and the design model.

The superblocks integrate trees and plants along with pedestrian friendly streets. The street intersections provide a good opportunity for spaces for children to play and community interaction. Bringing the ‘PlayBug’ here provides the missing link for a complete ecosystem.

Different areas of the site receive varied amount of sunlight based on the surrounding built environment. These variations can be used to program the play spaces and plants in such way to provide optimal conditions for the functioning of both components.

Again analyzing the amount of sunlight received by the different faces of the positioned modules, the insect shelters with plants can be placed on areas which receive a good amount of sunlight both to create a warmer environment the insects as well for good plant growth.


PlayBug, is a project of IaaC, Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia
developed at Master in Advanced Architecture, in 2020 by:

Saurabh Singla and Vinay Prabhakar

Senior Faculty: Chiara Farinea
Faculty: Mohamad El Atab
Student Assistant: Fiona Clara Louise Demeur