“This is the tallest building in this county, and it’s also the fastest-built,” said Rong Shengli, one of the building’s planners, looking over the rural sprawl from a helicopter pad on the hotel’s roof. “Next we’re going to build a 50-story building. Then a 100-story one, then a 150-story one. And they’re all going to go up fast.”
The time-lapse video provides a glimpse of how the hotel was made. Workers in blue jumpsuits are seen assembling “main boards,” the building blocks of Broad’s structures — 13-by-50-foot slabs containing ventilation shafts, water pipes, electric wiring and lighting fixtures sandwiched between ready-made floors and ceilings.
Building this way costs 20% to 30% less than traditional methods, said Jiang Yan, a senior vice president at Broad.
It’s also safer, said Zhang Yue, chief executive of Broad Group, because factories are typically less risky environments than construction sites.
The company says it is negotiating technology-transfer deals with firms in Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Mexico and India and hopes to establish partnerships in the United States.
Experts say that may not be easy. Broad’s buildings may not conform to U.S. fire codes. Labor laws could prevent employees from working the long hours required to construct a building with such speed.
Amy Lelyveld, a professor of architecture at Yale University, described prefabricated buildings in the U.S. as “kind of at the jewelry-making end of architecture” — an expensive niche.
Lelyveld expressed concern about the adequacy of construction oversight on a complicated, hurriedly constructed building like the Changsha hotel.
“I wonder why it was so fast,” she said, adding that “if it was slower there might be more opportunities to inspect the work.”
Zhang, however, said Broad could adapt to labor and fire safety laws in other countries, and that employees’ workdays would drop to eight hours as the company’s technology improves. “We will use international standards,” he said.
Technical Details of the 30 story Building built in 15 days
We have been closely tracking China’s Broad Group and their prefabricated factory mass produced ‘Can be Built’ skyscraper technology. Six months ago they had earthquake certified a scale model of their 30 story building. now they have built an actual 30 story building in 15 days at the end of 2011.
Broad Group Has Plans for a 666 meter tall skyscraper
A Chinese company developed new factory prebuilt construction that can make a 15 story building in 6 days plans to build the second tallest building in the world over 6 months. 93% of the construction work is done in the factory vs at most 40% in western countries.
The Changsha Broad Air Conditioning Company has unveiled designs for the 200-storey Sky City tower, a sustainable mixed use project. At 666 meters tall, the building will house 1.2 million square meters of space for residential apartments, retail, offices, restaurants, schools and a myriad of other facilities. The building will be manufactured in a factory and assembled on the construction site. Additionally, the tower will have the capacity for 70,000 to 110,000 residents.
They are trimming their costs to 7,000 yuan to 8,000 yuan per square meter. The company then adds its profit margin and sells its properties for around 10,000 yuan per sq m – or about half the price of properties in Shanghai outside the city center. This would convert to a 660 square foot unit costing about US$100,000. The whole building is 1.2 million square meters so this project will cost about US$1.25 to 1.46 billion and will sell for $1.83 billion. Numbeo has Shanghai cost of living and Shanghai apartment prices are currently three to six times as high to buy as these apartments would be
Comfort of Skycity
• 100% fresh air, no mixed with return air, eliminate infection. 3-stage filtered fresh air , 99% nano-particulates be filtered. Indoor air is 20-100 times cleaner than outdoor air. Central vacuuming system keeps indoor air quality.
• Space blocks and all rooms remain at 20~27 ℃ all year round, glass wall enable
sunshine lighting up the streets.
• The clear height of residences and office is 2.8m, the clear height of space blocks are 5.6m, 9m, 12m respectively.
• Four 4meter wide streets start from the ground to the floor 121 at 400m, the total length of street is 12km, shops, agriculture markets, handcraft shops, restaurants, amusement parks, sports centers, natatorium, cinemas, opera houses, museums, libraries, training centers, schools, kindergartens, clinics, banks, police stations, etc. on both sides of street, same as city downtown. Botanical garden, natural parks, fishponds, waterfalls, sand beach can be found in some floors, same as the suburban.
• 16 large observation elevators and 31 high-speed elevators can serve 30,000 people every hour.
• Level 9 earthquake resistance, scale model will be tested by national authorized institution.
• BROAD unique technologies “diagonal bracing, light weight, factory-made” ensure the
highest earthquake resistance level with minimum materials.
• Trapezoidal construction structure corresponds the law of mechanics, which can withstand earthquake and storm.
• Sky gardens locate on floor 71, 121, 156, 176 and 191(12,000m2 in total), also function as the helipads, which are able to evacuate tens of thousand people during fire emergency, provide extra fire protection than conventional skyscrapers.
• 150mm exterior insulated walls, triple-paned windows, exterior solar shading, interior window insulation and heat recovery fresh air, 80% more energy efficient than conventional buildings.
• Adopting “distributed energy system”, turbines provide power independently, exhaust from turbines is the source for cooling, heating and sanitary hot water. 50% more energy efficient than the power grid.
• Indoor HVAC is controlled by occupancy sensor, fan speed will be automatically adjusted to the lowest load when people left.
• Elevator generates electricity when ascending unload and descending full load, also choose the floor outside the elevator, and other electricity saving methods can save 75% more electricity than conventional elevator.
• LED lamp, 90% more energy efficient than incandescent lamp and 50% more energy efficient than fluorescent lamp.
• Separated drainage system, rain water is used for plant irrigation, bathing water will be directly drained after settled, bathroom sewage and kitchen waste go to biogas tank, biogas is used as fuel for air conditioning, and solid wastes become organic fertilizers.
• Annual energy conservation 60,000 ton oil equivalent
• Saving 600,000 ton construction materials
• Saving 1.4 sq. kilometers land (volume ratio 50)
• On-site construction waste is less than 1% of the total weight
• Zero raise dust on-site
• Zero water consumption on-site
• Recycle processes of living garbage from the building
• All steel structure, reuse after abandoned
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.
A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts. He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.