Unveiled> SOM’s Latest Supertall Building in China

(Courtesy SOM)

(Courtesy SOM)

A “supertall” building is one which tops out at over 1,250 feet. Right now, there are 18 completed supertall buildings and 21 under construction. Chicago-based architects Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill (SOM) will break ground on Tuesday on the 1,740-foot-tall CTF Tower in Tianjin, China. It will be the tenth supertall building to begin construction for SOM, the most of any firm in the world. The building is a carefully-crafted design which deliberately merges structural challenges with program and form.

The mixed-use tower in the Tianjin Economic Development Area, an area planned for new growth, has retail at the base, topped with offices, 300 residential units, and a 350-room, 5-star¬†hotel. “The functional aspects of program were integrated with the structure,” said SOM design partner Brian Lee. “And the form was also developed alongside the structural scheme.” Larger floor plates are needed for the office spaces, which are placed near the base of the building. Residential units with smaller floor plate are at the top.

The gentle curves of the building and the large, sloped, concrete elements form a “mega-column,” which acts as an external frame.¬†Environmental conditions also affected the final design. Wind slots, a porous crown at the top of the tower, and a gradiated opacity toward the higher floors all help to decrease wind loads, and the corners are rounded to prevent a vortex effect on the back side of the building.

(Courtesy SOM)

(Courtesy SOM)

(Courtesy SOM)

(Courtesy SOM)

5 Responses to “Unveiled> SOM’s Latest Supertall Building in China”

  1. nyccollector says:

    Just what the world needs – another super tall building to satisfy the childish ego of greedy real estate developers and hopelessly misguided government officials. As Philip Johnson used to say “I’d work for the devil if he paid me enough money.” Well the devil is alive and well, and firms like SOM continue to feed the beast!

  2. Arcashon says:

    Agree with first comment . Wondering who Architect Childs, (apt name considering), ripped off for this formal misadventure? He ripped of my design for my parents outdoor cedar table leg for world trade center one and there will be a reckoning, I demand satisfaction!

  3. Adrian Smith says:

    It’s a near copy of our Park Tower project designed for Dubai in 2008! Wow!

  4. scott coates says:

    Yuck on every level. I’m surprised that Mr. Smith designed the original!

  5. Roy Rogers Oldenkamp says:

    It should be called the KOI Tower as it resembles a fish.

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