The International Information Center for Structural Engineers

Tuesday, 25 March 2014 11:50

Hyper-Speed Vertical Train Hub Concept

Two British designers, Christopher Christophi and Lucas Mazarrasa, received honorable mention in eVolo’s 2014 Skyscraper Competition for their Hyper-Speed Vertical Train Hub concept. This year’s competition marks the ninth year that eVolo Magazine has hosted a competition to recognize outstanding ideas for vertical living through the novel use of technology, materials, programs, aesthetics, and spatial organizations. The Magazine picked three winners from the 525 projects from 43 countries that were submitted. The Hyper-Speed Vertical Train Hub was one of 20 projects that received honorable mention.

Diamond Developers has begun construction on the $300 million Sustainable City located just outside of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. They expect to have one hundred units ready by the end of the year, and the Sustainable City project will be finished by mid-2016. Residents who purchase units in the development will not be subjected to any service charges, maintenance fees, or community fees, and they will also be given a golf cart and a subsidy to purchase another electric car. The development will be the first self-sufficient city in the world in terms of resources, transportation, and energy.

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Two California state agencies announced actions last Friday that will help advance the California high-speed rail project. The state Water Resources Control Board announced they had approved an environmental permit that will allow construction to begin on a 24-mile stretch of track between Madera and Fresno. The state Public Works board also announced resolutions declaring a public need to condemn nine properties in downtown Fresno that the California High Speed Rail Authority needs for right of way for the project. 

Thursday, 20 March 2014 11:33

First Gallery of Louvre Abu Dhabi Completed

Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), master developer of major tourism, cultural and residential destinations in Abu Dhabi, has completed the construction of the first gallery of Louvre Abu Dhabi. The building will open its doors at some point during the fourth quarter of 2015. The museum is being hailed as the first universal museum in the Muslim world.

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Tuesday, 18 March 2014 12:02

South Korea’s Invisible Skyscraper

Rather than try to build the world’s largest tower, hotel, or other type structure, South Korea has approved the world’s first invisible skyscraper. The 1,476-foot Tower Infinity will use cameras to capture real-time images of the surroundings and then process and display those images in a way to make the tower seem invisible.

United States transit officials warned lawmakers last week that the lack of funding for the Highway Trust Fund and threat of insolvency by 2015 could delay many summer infrastructure projects. The transit officials would like Congress to quickly approve billions of dollars in new funding to avoid these costly delays. If the Highway Trust Fund does not receive additional funds, hundreds of thousands of jobs could be affected and the current project backlog will significantly increase.

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A new study published, by the New London Architecture think tank on Wednesday, found that there are currently 236 towers proposed, approved, or under construction in London.  The report defines a tower as a building with 20 or more stories. Of the new buildings, 80 percent will be residential and the rest will either be office space, hotels, or mixed-use. Also, 33 of the 236 new buildings are between 40 and 49 floors, and 22 are taller than 50 stories. Peter Murray, Director of New London Architecture, believes the skyscraper boom is the result of increased pressure on the Greater London Assembly to build more housing. London Mayor Boris Johnson announced last year, as part of his housing plan, that London would need to add 42,000 new houses each year to meet the country's housing demands.