Worldwide Sites

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Exhibits currently on display

Shanghai Tower

Companies: Gensler, The Architectural Design & Research Institute of Tongji University, Thornton Tomasetti, Shanghai Tower Construction and Development Co., Ltd.

Industry: Architecture, Engineering & Construction

High-performance public space at towering heights

At 632 meters and 128 stories, the mixed-use Shanghai Tower will be the tallest building in China once it is completed in 2014.

Conceptual design

Three design concepts were developed in response to Shanghai’s extreme wind conditions: an asymmetrical facade, a tapering shape, and consistently rounded corners.

Asymmetry and taper

The asymmetry and taper of the building work together to reduce wind loads on the building by 24 percent, providing a savings overall in both building materials and construction costs. The tower incorporates 4 pairs of super columns rather than a ring of columns around the circumference.

Performance analysis

Wind tunnel testing on a 1:85-scale model focused on validating the optimal tower shape and showed that reducing wind load allows for a lighter and more efficient structure. Using a computational fluid dynamics model, the team simulated internal temperature and air-flow distribution.

Super-tall sustainable showcase

Optimized for high performance and sustainability, the tower is China’s tallest building and can be viewed as a symbol of a future filled with opportunity.