Click a presenter to see a video of their presentation, and the accompanying paper and PowerPoint presentation.
Executive General Manager – Development, Lendlease Corporation
Senior Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
Assistant General Manager, Greatwall Construction Holdings Group
Design Partner, 10 DESIGN
Chairman, Silverstein Properties
Partner, Studio Daniel Libeskind
The Urban Habitat: Part I session explored the deep importance of how our urban habitat shapes us, and how we shape it, with the narratives and history that reside in our cities. Three powerful presentations, chaired and led by CTBUH Trustee Timothy Johnson, Design Partner, NBBJ, showcased projects that addressed the role of the skyscraper at the human scale.
The session was kicked off with Tom Weeks, Executive General Manager – Development, Lendlease Corporation, and Ivan Harbour, Senior Partner, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners. The two presented Barangaroo South’s International Towers in Sydney, which orients toward the northwest to mitigate excessive solar glare and provide views of Darling Harbour. The project also contains the largest bicycle hub in Australia. This revitalizing complex connects Sydney’s CBD to its waterfront, celebrating an unbroken street frontage that invites pedestrians into public space – particularly where it is scarce and thus highly prized. “Barangaroo is at the density of the city’s core, which for the first time is brought right down to the water,” said Harbour.
Next, Huan Tu, Assistant General Manager, Greatwall Construction Holdings Group, and Nick Cordingly, Design Partner, 10 DESIGN, described their process behind the Greatwall Complex, the first LEED Platinum-certified project in Wuhan. Greatwall encompasses two office towers with a podium, chock-full of amenities and connected to the street via a winding series of ramps, each with their own retail frontage. This draws pedestrian activity around and up into the building in a visible way, resisting the insular effect that some skyscrapers and shopping malls can have on their surroundings. “The opportunity we saw as designers was actually in the podium,” Cordingly said. “We asked, ‘how can we create something unique that begins to interact with the streetscape?’”
Approaching the topic with all the reverence it merits, Larry Silverstein, Chairman, Silverstein Properties, and Carla Swickerath, Partner, Studio Libeskind, detailed the intent and symbiology behind the World Trade Center Master Plan, and how it both represents and addresses darkness, vulnerability, loss—but also resilience and rebuilding for New York City following the September 11 terrorist attacks. “The most important aspect of the memorial is that it’s open to all as a completely public space,” said Swickerath. “Although the intention of the September 11 attacks was to frighten us, we didn’t want security on the site; we wanted it to be open and free.”
The World Trade Center Master Plan was selected as the 2018 Urban Habitat Award recipient.