Construction starts on Smith and Gill's ice-inspired China skyscraper
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Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

Construction starts on Smith and Gill's ice-inspired skyscraper for Chengdu

News: construction has started in Chengdu, China, on a 468-metre-high crystalline skyscraper by the architects behind the current and future tallest buildings in the world.

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

The Greenland Tower Chengdu was designed by Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill – the former SOM architects responsible for both the Burj Khalifa and the forthcoming Kingdom Tower – and is set to become the tallest building in south-western China.

According to the architects, the faceted-glass form of the office and hotel tower was "inspired by the unique ice mountain topography around Chengdu".

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

At night, inset LED lighting will highlight the edges designed to create the impression of a shimmering glacier.

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

"Like the mountain ridges reflecting the light of the sky and the valleys reflecting light from the earth, the iconic tower will perform as a light sculpture to diffuse light from 360 degrees, creating a connection between sky and earth," said the studio in a statement.

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

Due to complete in 2018, the 100-storey-high skyscraper will surpass the city's current tallest buildings, the Chengdu IFS Towers, by over 200 metres.

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill

It will be accompanied by two smaller residential towers, standing at 115 and 147 metres, and a six-storey podium housing a shopping centre, conference and exhibition space, and a roof garden.

Chengdu Greenland Tower by Smith and Gill
Programme diagram – click for larger image

Chinese property developer Greenland is behind the project. The company is also working with Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture on the 636-metre-high Wuhan Greenland Center, which is likely to become China's third-tallest building when it is completed next year.