The folks behind Masdar City - the ecocity planned for the United Arab Emirates by Foster + Partners - have unveiled designs for the city's first piece of iconic architecture, a $300 million home for Masdar's corporate headquarters. The building will be "positive energy," meaning it will create more energy than it consumes. This will be accomplished by draping a massive canopy of photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, passive solar cooling and natural shading mechanisms over the building.
One of the building's architects, Adrian Smith, described the building (with no lack of hyperbole) as:
One of the most significant developments of our time. As a positive energy complex, the project will have far-reaching influence on the buildings of tomorrow.
The building will be a "mixed-use" development, housing private residences and local startups as well, and is expected to be completed by 2010, as part of phase one of the city. For a nifty fly-around animated perspective of the project, check out the architects' site here.
Masdar City is expected to be completed in its entirety by 2016. For more on what the experts think of the planned Masdar City, check out: Ecocities of Tomorrow: Can Foster + Parters' Masdar City in UAE be Truly Sustainable?
This post is part of an ongoing series examining current and future trends in ecological city building ahead of the 2008 Ecocity World Summit during Earth Day Week in San Francisco this April.