Arguably Brisbane's most cherished park, the City Botanic Gardens is a haven for rare botanic species. The green space has provided residents with a temporary reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the surrounding busy streets of the central business district since 1855. As the park's diverse plant life continues to blossom, a skyscraper has also sprouted from the earth just steps away

Rendering for Abian Botanic Gardens, image via Wood Marsh Architecture

Sunland Group's Abian Botanic Gardens is a 40-storey residential skyscraper representing an end value of $240 million AUD. To contain 150 units, the project is Brisbane's first luxury highrise development in about five years. With an average apartment price of $1.6 million AUD, the building is a towering reminder of the demand for urban living that is fuelling downtown growth not only in Australian cities, but most Western metropolises. 

The base of Abian Botanic Gardens, image via Wood Marsh Architecture

The tower's sculptural expression was envisioned by Melbourne-based practice Wood Marsh Architecture. Due to the tapering and curving profile of the organically shaped tower, there is no discernible primary elevation to the building. Like a chameleon, the smooth glass facade changes its appearance depending on the light. Residents' balconies don't interrupt the sinuous silhouette of the building. Their inset positioning preserves the integrity of the design while allowing protection from harsh weather. The facade unravels at the base, creating a canopy over the entryway and ground-level facilities. 

Looking up at the rendered completed tower, image via Wood Marsh Architecture

Construction on the tower began in 2014 and is on track for 2017 completion. The opening in the facade two thirds of the way up the tower signifies a two-storey apartment level, which is recessed from the bulk of the tower. As of August 26, the 35th floor has been poured, leaving only five levels left until structural completion. 

Construction reaches the 35th floor, image by Flickr user Leonard J Matthews via Creative Commons

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