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2020 Buildings: 5 Buildings to look forward to in 2020

1. Poem Pavilion, UAE, Es Devlin

Another big event that is taking place this year is the Dubai Expo 2020, which will see pavilions designed by the likes of Santiago Calatrava, Foster + Partners, BIG and Grimshaw.

One of the most highly anticipated designs, however, is Es Devlin’s performative Poem Pavilion that will use artificial intelligence to animate its facade. It is the UK’s first World Expo structure created by a female designer. “My hope is that the fusion of architecture, poetry, music, and science in this female-led project will attract and inspire girls and young women to investigate areas of science and technology that they might otherwise have felt weren’t for them,” she continued.

The 20-meter-high, cone-shaped pavilion will be made up of rows of protruding slats that extend outwards from one central point to form a circular facade. It will feature an illuminated “message to space” made up of numerous AI-generated poems, which the Expo’s anticipated 25 million visitors will be invited to contribute to.

Visitors will enter the building from below the cone through an illuminated Maze of Aspiration. Featuring augmented reality-enhanced exhibitions, the maze transforms the queue – which Expo visitors often complain about – into a virtue, using it to entertain and educate visitors while they explore Britain’s advances in artificial intelligence and space technology.

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2. Musée Atelier Audemars Piguet, Switzerland, BIG

Bjarke Ingel’s firm BIG has an array of projects due to reach completion in 2020, but one of the most exciting is this museum for Swiss watchmaker Audemars Piguet at its headquarters in Switzerland.

The roof of the structure is a continuous sheet of steel-clad in brass. Its undulating form allows breaks in the roofline, allowing light to enter and for views out. This lightweight roof is supported by structural glass walls which simultaneously control the route through the building while allowing the visitor views of the whole gallery.

The building will be partially sunken into the ground and coil up from the landscape to offer a glimpse of a series of glazed galleries and event spaces inside.

3. Datong Art Museum, China, Foster + Partners

The long-awaited Datong Art Museum by Foster + Partners is expected to be completed in 2020, seven years later than planned. Datong Art Museum – China’s ‘Museum of the 21st Century’ – is one of four major new buildings within Datong New City’s cultural plaza. The centerpiece of the 32,000-square-metre venue is the Grand Gallery, a heroically scaled, top-lit exhibition space measuring 37 meters high and spanning almost 80 meters, in which artists will be commissioned to create large-scale works of art. The space is flexible and efficient – services are integrated with the structure and the gallery can be accessed directly by an articulated 40-foot container vehicle to install large-scale sculptures, stage, and lighting equipment.

The distinctive 32,000 sq m museum will be largely submerged into the ground, with the four large interconnected steel pyramids that form its roof appearing to erupt through the surface of the surrounding plaza. The dramatic, unusual structure also assists with the museum’s passive energy savings, as skylights placed within the north and north-west facing pyramids allow for maximum natural light while minimizing the impact of solar heat and will sit beside three other major new buildings within Datong New City’s cultural plaza.

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4. Bee’ah Headquarters, UAE, Zaha Hadid Architects

Bee’ah, the Middle East’s leading fully integrated environmental and waste management company has commissioned Zaha Hadid Architects to build its new Headquarters Building in Sharjah, UAE, following the 2013 international competition.

Working towards achieving its Zero-Waste to landfill, cleaner air and water, renewable energy and sustainable future targets, Bee’ah is developing and providing coherent and sustainable environmental solutions to meet the challenges of the community it serves. The sinuous building is designed to echo the shape of sand dunes to help the structure withstand extreme weather conditions and blend in with its desert setting.

In addition to a zero waste to landfill goal, the headquarters is designed as a zero net energy consumption building.

5. Tokyo 2020 Olympic Stadium, Japan, Kengo Kuma

New National Stadium (新国立競技場, Shin kokuritsu kyōgijō) is a multi-purpose stadium in Kasumigaoka, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. The stadium will serve as the main stadium for the opening and closing ceremonies, as well as the venue for track and field events at the 2020 Summer Olympics and 2020 Summer Paralympics. It will comprise an oval, wooden-lattice structure wrapped by plants to complement its woodland site.

The three-tiered, 80,000-seat National Stadium has been subject to controversy as it replaced initial plans for a Zaha Hadid-designed stadium, which was scrapped over escalating costs.

Construction is well underway on Kengo Kuma’s design for the Tokyo 2020 National Olympic Stadium. The stadium will be located on the site of Kenzo Tange’s 1964 Tokyo Olympic Stadium, which was demolished to make way for the new structure. The opening ceremony of the National Stadium will be on July 24, 2020.

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