High density means upward planning. In order to avoid urban sprawl – something that may very well become a large part of Melbourne’s future – height is key.
Developing the ‘tallest’ also comes with the added bonus of putting architecture into a category all of its own, even if it is only for a hot minute until the next big thing comes along.
Kannfinch’s plans for 115 Bathurst Street in Sydney’s CBD is garnering the kind of attention that comes with the tallest of buildings. The plans for the development outline the construction of a 240 metre mixed-use tower on a site that will take up approximately 4,000 square metres.
The building is expected to be not only be the tallest, but also the thinnest on the Sydney horizon.
It will feature space for retail and commercial entities, but will also connect to the residential sector, with space for 70 residential levels that will feature 420 apartments. This section of the development integrates the state heritage building at 339 Pitt Street, broadening the building’s impact and encompassing a greater space, which will also include surrounding laneways.
Those laneways will probably be in a constant state of shade due to this towering structure. While this may not be problematic, and certainly doesn’t seem to be in equally dense city spaces, the question does stand: when is ‘tall’ tall enough?
Is the goal to continue to develop strategies, materials and tools that allow us to create record-breaking buildings? Mixing the challenges of extreme height with extreme thinness will prove to be an engineering obstacle, but does that show the real progress of an industry when it is able to overcome issues that would traditionally be insurmountable?
Futuristic films and books often set the scene way up high in the sky, as if the upward living plan is a given. More and more, buildings seem to be trending that way.
This is the way the industry is moving and has been since the industrial revolution, with the tallest still reaping the greatest amount of attention…for as long as they hold the title.