SOM Chicago opens new tower, Beijing’s tallest

Beijingwtc

With the Burj Khalifa and Chicago’s Trump Tower, the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill has had quite a supertall skyscraper run lately. And guess what? The run ain’t done. SOM just opened another supertall, this one called the China World Trade Center Tower. It’s Beijing’s tallest building.

Here are the basics about the skyscraper: It rises 81 stories and contains a mix of uses—offices, meeting rooms, restaurants and a hotel. The design architect was SOM partner Brian Lee.

In a statement from SOM, Lee calls the tower “an important new icon on the Beijing skyline, built specifically to suit its environment and unite the Center as a whole,”

He adds: “The project open spaces and courts energize the streetscape and provide a pedestrian, civic setting for the China World Trade Center. The tower’s tapering columnar form is a timeless design that reflects the high performance and rational culture of present-day Beijing. It’s seamless integration with the surrounding areas seeks to return to a walkable, urban fabric that comprised traditional Beijing.”

The only way to judge whether these claims are true, of course, is to be in Beijing. I’m not, but maybe you are and would like to weigh in.

Former SOM partner Adrian Smith, of course, was the lead designer on both the Burj Khalifa and Trump Tower.

http://featuresblogs.chicagotribune.com/theskyline/2010/08/som-chicago-opens-new-tower-beijings-tallest.html

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