After announcements of ground-breaking and then of cancellation, it appears that the Sky City project in Changsha may be back online and back in the news.
A story today in the South China Morning Post reported that Broad Group, the developer of the 838 metre tall Sky City, has announced that Chinese steel is not adequate for use in construction of the world’s tallest building.
The SCMP quoted Zhang as saying, “The hundreds of thousands of tonnes steel used by Sky City will come from the most technologically advanced country, Luxembourg, with very high price, tariffs and a huge transport cost. It is not very environmentally correct to transport such an amount of steel more than 20,000 kilometres, but my reasoning tells me safety must be prioritised.”
Zhang did not raise any specific issues regarding domestic Chinese steel, however, the announcement does indicate that, at least from the developer’s point of view, Sky City is still on track.
Broad Group projects that they can complete what would then be the tallest building in the world within seven months. However, there have been conflicting reports that the project may not yet have received all necessary approvals from the government.
In the most recent published schedule, the developer plans to complete the 220-storey structure by April of next year, and Sky City would be 10 metres taller than the world’s current champ, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.
Broad has primarily made their reputation in the building materials industry, and plans to make Sky City completely of pre-fabricated pieces, which is the secret sauce behind the super-fast construction schedule.
The Changsha-based company has already completed a 30-storey hotel project in only 15 days and a three-storey building in only nine days.
Beyond the ambitious schedule, however, many observers have questioned the engineering projections underlying the project, as well as the economic viability of constructing the world’s tallest building in one of China’s second-tier cities.