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Movement: Beijing embraces Brave New World of buildings

Posted in Movements by Rob Eales on August 8th, 2008

I thought the Sustainable Cities Network audience would find the following article interesting. As climate change approaches so too does innovation arise in building techniques! Have a read below of the abstract about how the city of Beijing is embracing such change.

Date: June 24, 2008 — Updated 1427 GMT (2227 HKT)
Beijing embraces Brave New World of buildings
By Stephanie Busari, For CNN, URL

LONDON, England (CNN) — China’s new found wealth has seen an explosion in the number of new developments springing up in what is, arguably, the world’s biggest building boom.
The construction of the Linked Hybrid project is underway in Beijing.

Nowhere is this more apparent than in Beijing, which has transformed into a virtual construction zone as the city undergoes an Olympic makeover.

Once a flat cityscape in the shadow of the formidable Forbidden City, Beijing has been struck by skyscraper fever.

The city is now an architect’s playground with foreign “starchitects,” like Norman Foster flocking to the country armed with individual creations that push aesthetic and technological boundaries.

And the latest addition to the Beijing skyline is no exception.

Standing on the edge of the former site of the city’s historic walls are a series of eight asymmetrical towers that bestride the smog-laden landscape like a colossus.

Dubbed the Beijing Linked Hybrid, this architectural maverick has certainly pushed the design envelope to its very limit.

The brainchild of New York architect Steven Holl, the mixed-use unit is a ring of eight 21-story towers, linked at the 20th floor by gently sloping public sky bridges, lined with galleries, cafes, restaurants, bars and shops.

The development has been widely praised for its forward thinking sustainable design that includes a waste water recycling plant that sits beneath the complex and one of the world’s largest geothermal systems, which eliminates the need for boilers or electrical air conditioners.

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