Saturday, December 09, 2006
The weather outside is frightful
So, of course, you put up a tent:
Kazakhstan has unveiled a new architectural project for its capital Astana - a giant transparent tent that will contain an indoor city.
The 150m-high (500ft) dome, designed by UK architect Norman Foster, will be built in just over a year.
The tent is being made from special material that absorbs sunlight to create the effect of summer inside.
Astana lies in the very heart of Central Asian steppe. Temperatures there often drop to -30C in the winter.
....The idea is to recreate summer, so that when the outside temperature is -30C, the residents of the Kazakh capital can play outdoor tennis, take boat rides or sip coffee on the pavement cafes.
Called Khan Shatyry, the project is designed by Mr Foster, who has recently built a giant glass pyramid in Astana.
"Nothing of the sort has been done before, and from the engineering point of view it's an extremely difficult project," says Fettah Tamince, the head of Turkey's development company Sembol that is building the tent.
Mr Tamince is nevertheless confident the company can complete the construction in just 12 months.