Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture
to design Astana Expo 2017

| 11 comments
Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture to design Astana Expo 2017

News: Chicago firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture has seen off competition from Zaha Hadid, UNStudio, Snøhetta and more to land the design commission for the World Expo 2017 exhibition in Astana, Kazakhstan.

Smith and Gill, who are currently also working on construction of the world's tallest skyscraper, will masterplan a 173-hectare site in Kazakhstan's capital. It will include a 25-hectare exhibition centre to host the world fair, alongside housing, schools, healthcare facilities, shopping centres and parks.

A spherical Kazakhstan Pavilion will form the centre of the exhibition, surrounded by International, Theme and Corporate Pavilions. Once the exhibition is over, everything inside the new buildings could be either dismantled or adapted to accommodate new functions, meaning no demolition would be required.

Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture to design Astana Expo 2017

Jeremy Rifkin, chairman of the technical committee of the competition, said the winning scheme is "the most practical in terms of both sustainable development and architectural and artistic design".

Bearing the title Future Energy, the Astana Expo 2017 will be centred around the promotion of sustainable energy sources and technologies, so all the energy consumed by visitors to the exhibition will be generated from renewable sources including solar panels and wind turbines.

Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture was one of 45 practices shortlisted to masterplan the site, including Coop Himmelblau, Mecanoo, Safdie Architects and Massimiliano and Doriana Fuksas.

Following on from Milan's Expo taking place next year, the 2017 exhibition be hosted for three months during the summer of 2017 and will feature pavilions from over 100 participating countries. The most recent Expos held were the Yeosu Expo 2012 in South Korea and the Shanghai Expo 2010, which featured Thomas Heatherwick's Seed Cathedral.

  • Steeevyo

    These guys should stick to vertical. Horizontal looks horrible.

  • Prole

    There’s a mistake in the first paragraph, it should read: ‘Chicago firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture has seen off competition from Zaha Hadid, UNStudio and Snøhetta to design a Zaha Hadid-esque building.’

  • grig

    Money money money is so funny! If only… I guess that it is hard to ask architects to refuse a dictator. There will always be one who will say yes.

    • Sabina Khamzina

      Don’t even try to pretend that you know the situation in Kazakhstan. Mass media is a bad source. Where are you from?

    • Vlad

      I have been living in Kazakhstan for 5 years. You have no idea what you are talking about. Why voice an opinion on something you have no clue about.

  • Concerned Citizen

    These formless shapes have now turned irritating and tiresome. They remind me of mould forming on a block of cheese.

  • hot dog

    Shapes are two dimensional. I think you’re attempting to refer to geometry.

  • Leo

    “the most practical in terms of both sustainable development and architectural and artistic design”

    Sustainable? It looks like it will be very car-oriented. The site, judging by the illustrations, seems to be fenced by a motorway. (There are two pedestrian crossings leading to grass.) I do not think cars will be fueled by solar energy in Kazakhstan by 2017… I guess, if they are investing in this plan, they have way too much money coming from Caspian Sea oil.

  • zignacat

    I am Zignacat Youngste from Astana. I really like Gordon Smith’s design because famous rich architecture built in Kazakhstan is very good for Kazakhstan. This will be a really famous piece of architecture by Gordon Smith. Hopefully there will be more very high profile buildings like Burjie Kahlifa built here. I’m really happy.

  • DK405

    C’mon guys, stop pretending like architects do anything except materialise the egos of the rich. Form follows function. The function being to fulfil the wishes of your masters, the rich and powerful.

    • Vlad

      And the architects do what, without these people and their egos?