14 November 2007
A skyscraper, it isn't
Maybe a skysander, or God's Own Miter Box. This is what they're building in Beijing for the new headquarters of China Central Television, and while it's perhaps too much to hope that this $600-million non-box will bury once and for all the brutal barracks of socialist realism, entirely too many examples of which get built in capitalist countries, I'm just fascinated by the sheer effrontery of the shape: it's as though M. C. Escher decided he needed a parking garage.
The CCTV building has a nine-storey base, three-storey basement, two leaning towers that slope at 6° in each direction, and a nine- to 13-storey "Overhang", which is suspended 36 storeys in the air. The building forms an asymmetrical arch, through which will be seen the adjacent Television Cultural Centre (TVCC). Together these two buildings will form the focal point of Beijing's new Central Business District (CBD).
Design for the Television Cultural Centre Hotel is to include a random stack of rooms, inspired by the form of a termite's nest.
What's really fun about this, of course, is that Beijing is riven with fault lines, so not only do these structures have to look amazing, they have to put up serious resistance to major seismic activity. Let's hope they can keep the lead paint out of them.
(Via Fraters Libertas.)Posted at 8:00 AM to Entirely Too Cool