SOM Unveils Designs for Singapore's First "Supertall" Skyscraper

Architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has revealed the designs for 8 Shenton Way, a structure that will soon join the country’s other popular attractions including Marina Bay Sands, Supertree Grove, and Cloud Fores as the island’s new tallest building. SOM is behind some of the world’s tallest and most iconic buildings including the Burj Khalifa and New York’s One World Trade Center.

Despite its dense population, Singapore opts for a more low-rise approach when compared to other major cities in the region such as Hong Kong and Shanghai. While Singapore currently has 96 skyscrapers, with Guoco Tower currently being the tallest standing at 283.7 meters, none reach the threshold of “supertall” which is used to describe buildings exceeding 300 meters in height. Measuring 305 meters tall, the 63-story 8 Shenton Way will be the first.

Integrating dynamic “live, work, and play” elements, the new tower looks to offer offices, public spaces, luxury residences, retail, and a hotel with over 1.6 million square feet of floor space. The design is said to be inspired by bamboo forests with the renderings showing a crescendo of seven lively rooftop terraces. Greenery extends into the interiors — which consist of wood, terracotta, and stone — with plants chosen specifically to attract birds and butterflies. Nature and sustainability are said to be the main driving forces, with materials chosen to minimize carbon emissions, from the zero-waste manufacturing of terracotta materials to the use of engineered bamboo.

“Emerging from the pandemic, this moment presents a rare and exciting opportunity for architects to explore new approaches to health-driven placemaking,” said SOM Design Principal Nic Medrano in a press release “Singapore is an incredible canvas to do this, with its excellent quality of life, an abundance of green space and diversity of cultures. Our design weaves together nature, heritage, connections to transit, luxury living, healthy workplaces, and lively public spaces into a thriving hub for the community.”

For convenience, the tower will be connected to Singapore’s subterranean pedestrian network which includes access to MRT stations. Post-pandemic features will also be incorporated including contactless tech, antimicrobial materials, and adaptable interior spaces.

The skyscraper is set to be completed in 2028. More details can be found on the SOM website.

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