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Aurecon 360 Issue 8 - Thinking in action

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Andy Davids talks tall buildings Our renowned tall buildings expert looks at what the future holds Andy is one of only a handful of internationally renowned experts who design super tall buildings. He held complete design responsibility for the Burj Khalifa, which is currently the tallest building in the world, as well as that of the 838m J220 Sky City, which will be the tallest building in China. "While there seems to be a growing appetite for impressive tall structures globally, an ongoing challenge is to design architecturally challenging structures that are cost effective to construct and sustainable to operate," says Andy. Andy believes that as the appetite for tall buildings increases, it is the close partnership between architects, engineers and clients that will demand design innovation. "The great architects that I've been privileged to work with on super tall buildings were practitioners that had a thorough understanding of the pieces that go together, not just the architectural components, but how the technical systems go together to create the finished building," says Andy. Tall buildings mark a time and a place Historically, tall buildings were used by governments and powerful corporations to make a statement. Tall buildings are a palpable link to our desire to go faster, higher and longer. At the beginning of the 20th Century, the top 20 tall buildings in the world were structures such as church spires and domes. Then at the turn of the century, the Eiffel Tower doubled the height of manmade tall buildings in one fell swoop. Today, architects put a great deal of trust in the hands of engineers to deliver the project and they are not dictated to by materials or methods. Andy believes that architects feel less constrained by technology, as they consider that if there isn't an existing technical solution, engineers will

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