spiraling above the Canadian flatlands

We tend to think of innovative skyscrapers as being where the money is … namely Asia and the Middle East.  Skyscrapers in the West are scarcely built these days and if they are, they are efficiently built as rectilinear boxes of conventional high-rise design, in other words … boring! To be fair, in the last decade, there have been a handful of cutting-edge breakthroughs in the designs of towers in the West, for example, London’s Gherkin building and New York’s 8 Spruce Street.

But can you believe there is an unassuming suburb in Toronto whose claim to fame is the Toronto International Airport and the largest shopping center in the region who now has two of the most interesting skyscrapers around? Indeed, Mississauga, Canada boasts the curvy, Trucioli-shaped, 56-story, 428-unit condo tower nicknamed “Marilyn” and its almost identical twin, a 50-story high rise with 433 units. Because of their corkscrew shape every floor is different, making it also a feat of extraordinary engineering to make the design functional.
Kudos to the Beijing architects Ma Yanson and Qun Dang of MAD Architects for their aesthetic vision and to the Fernbrook Cityzen developers for taking a chance, expensive as it was (according to the NYTimes, the director of site operations for the construction company said half of the cost of the 5 building complex was eaten up by the 2 curvy towers), to build something the design community can actually be proud of … hats off to Mississauga!
image credit: Ryan Enn Hughes for the New York Times
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