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The most talked about eco-skyscrapers and other creations of hi-tech father Norman Foster, who is building the future
The most talked about eco-skyscrapers and other creations of hi-tech father Norman Foster, who is building the future

He is called the most influential architect of our day - but he is also condemned just as often. He fights for the environment - and creates high-tech ultra-modern skyscrapers. He, a futurist and visionary, is entrusted with the reconstruction of historic buildings, and every time it is a new word in construction. If the legendary king Midas turned everything he touches into gold, then Norman Foster turns everything … into the future.

Foster is today called with full confidence the founder of hi-tech, although Vladimir Shukhov and Jean Nouvel used similar techniques before him. However, the ideas of many of his predecessors were brushed aside - the wrong moment, the wrong technologies, such materials do not exist, it is impossible … Norman Foster, with his extravagant approach, appeared in the right place at the right time.

Sage Gateshead Concert Hall

He was born in Manchester, from childhood he adored watching planes and trains, dreamed of an engineering career. He dropped out of school early to help his parents - he got a job in a furniture store. Even then, he had an interest in environmental design. Before taking up architecture, he worked in the city treasury, happened in the Air Force, stood at the machine, sold ice cream … However, later Foster really received an excellent education - the University of Manchester, then Yale. It was during his years at Yale University that he founded Team 4, which also included his wife and his business partner Richard Rogers - also with his wife. Young architects were ready to shake the foundations of a conservative society, calling for help from the latest engineering advances. And then the time came for the emergence of the architectural bureau Foster + Partners, whose creative area stretched from Canada to Singapore.

Norman Foster Towers

Mary-Ax against the backdrop of city buildings

The most famous buildings of Foster + Partners are skyscrapers of an unusual shape. Instead of houses-boxes made of glass and steel, forms rush upward, more like shell casings, termite mounds or something indescribable. The architect strives to make skyscrapers, the brainchild of modern technocratic civilization, as safe as possible for the environment. Before starting the design, a detailed analysis of the climatic features of the environment, illumination, air circulation is carried out. Collaboration with Richard Fuller, an ecological high-tech apologist who invites everyone to move to live in domed houses, was not in vain. While erecting the Mary Ax Tower in London (locals affectionately call it "cucumber" or "corn"), Foster gave it a deliberately streamlined, almost physiological shape. The tower is equipped with solar panels, which allows it to consume half the energy of any other building of this size. Ventilation of the premises is provided in a natural way due to the special design of the facade panels. In addition, the unusual shape of the building does not interfere with the natural movement of air masses.

Hearst Tower

No less famous is his other British skyscraper - the Hearst Tower, an office center where the country's largest publishing houses, owned by the Hirst Publishing House, are located. It was built using mesh structures that were invented by our compatriot, the architect Vladimir Shukhov, whom Foster himself calls his idol and inspirer.And again, energy-saving technologies - a skyscraper "collects" rainwater and consumes 25% less electricity than an "ordinary" office building.

Norman Foster projects in Russia and Kazakhstan

Tower Russia (visualization)

Many futuristic projects developed for our country often remain just a set of drawings and renderings for economic and many other reasons. This happened with several of Foster's works. Tower "Russia" with a height of over 600 meters - again an obvious homage to Vladimir Shukhov - was to become the tallest building in Europe. Its construction has already begun, but it was stopped due to lack of funding.

Crystal Island (visualization)

The same fate befell "Crystal Island" - a real skyscraper city. The building, which resembles a giant sprout, was supposed to house residential apartments, shops, offices, fitness rooms and even educational institutions. One could live in it for years without going beyond. But this futuristic dream was not destined to come true - and again due to lack of funds.

Khan-Shatyr in Kazakhstan

But Kazakhstan is more fortunate. In 2006, Khan-Shatyr, the tallest tent in the world (one hundred and fifty meters!), Was erected in its capital. Yes, yes, from the point of view of construction, this is exactly a tent - a high-tech polymer canvas is stretched over a steel structure.

Palace of Peace and Reconciliation

Nur-Sultan also hosts another project by Foster's architectural bureau, the pyramidal Palace of Peace and Reconciliation, built specifically for the "Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions".

Restoration of the Reichstag building

Dome over the Reichstag building

The reconstruction of the Reichstag building in 1993 became a symbol of German unification. Foster did without radical experiments, but not without high-tech - now a glass dome rises above the historic building, inside which there are reflective elements that "transmit" sunlight into the building, and a ventilation shaft. This allows you to reduce energy consumption for the maintenance of the Reichstag.

Millennium Bridge and Harry Potter

Millennium Bridge

Foster's Bureau is not only concerned with office centers and modern palaces. A wide variety of engineering designs can be found in his portfolio. For example - the Millennium Suspension Bridge over the Thames, the only pedestrian bridge in London, which is a steel band on two supports. It was here that one of Harry Potter's battles with the Death Eaters unfolded. Now Baron Foster (the title was granted by Queen Elizabeth II) is eighty-five years old. Foster is the owner of many prestigious prizes and awards, including the Pritzker Prize, a kind of analogue of the Nobel Prize in the field of architecture. He is full of strength and energy, patronizes young talents, promotes "green architecture" and does not even plan to rest on his laurels.

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