After safety and regulatory issues stalled the project just days after construction had started, the Chinese province of Hunan has ditched plans to build the world's tallest tower in Changsha. The project site, which falls within a rare wetland, is now one of 20 waters to be permanently protected.
Broad Sustainable Building, a subsidiary of China's Broad Group, originally proposed the 838-metre tower. Dubbed Sky City, the 220-storey tower would have topped Dubai's Burj Khalifa by 10 metres and include schools, a hospital, helipads, and apartments housing 30,000 people. It was to be a record-breaking development not only in sheer height, but construction technique. Plans called for much of the tower's critical components to be fabricated off site, transported to the property, and assembled quickly. Broad Group claimed the megatall skyscraper would be completed in only 90 days.
Though it seems like an unrealistic exercise, something out of a distant future, Broad Group has proven that prefabricated skyscrapers are indeed possible. Their "Mini Sky City" project, at a still-impressive 57-storeys, completed in 2015 was constructed at a rate of three floors per day. Also located in Changsha, the residential toweris now the tallest prefabricated building in the world.
Since construction halted, the Sky City site has taken on a new purpose: locals have been using the waterlogged 2.6-hectare foundations to raise fish. Daze Lake is a biologically diverse wetland, the last of its kind in the city, where many bird species have also nested. The construction of such a large project — which attracted scorn from environmental activists — would disrupt this pristine area of Changsha.
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