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CTBUH Conference 2017 in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane

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With its breathtaking combination of harbor, skyline and opera house as a backdrop, Sydney was the ideal location for the 2017 event.

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) held its 2017 conference, “Connecting the City: People, Density & Infrastructure,” in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane on October 30-November 3, 2017. Co-chaired by CTBUH Executive Director Antony Wood, Grimshaw Architects Associate Principal Jeff Morgan, Bates Smart Director Philip Vivian and Sydney Architecture Studio Director Ken McBryde, the event kicked off at the Hyatt Regency Sydney and drew approximately 1,000 delegates from more than 45 countries.

As always, the vertical-transportation (VT) industry played a big role in the conference, with KONE, Otis, Schindler and thyssenkrupp among the top sponsors and VT experts from those companies participating in panels and giving presentations on topics such as smart technologies and urban mobility.

The 2017 conference inquired far beyond the tall building as an icon, debating a new set of guidelines and responsibilities toward skyscrapers becoming “connectors” in the city. The discussion embraced every discipline, from urban planning to cost consulting, architectural design to VT, real-estate development to curtain-wall design.

CTBUH observed that few, if any, locations were more suited to host the event than Sydney, which it described as:

“. . . a city with a 230-year history in urban development that finds itself at the nexus of much of the current debate about cities: density versus suburbanization, modernity versus historical preservation, infrastructure versus urban life, the high- versus low-rise realms. With its breathtaking combination of harbor, skyline and opera house as a backdrop, and the famous Antipodean welcoming charm of its people, there was no better place for this debate at this specific time than Sydney.”

Sydney is reinventing itself with developments such as Barangaroo, Central Park, the Sydney Metro and Parramatta Square. This is symptomatic of what is happening in global cities around the world, such as New York or London, which are seen as safe harbors for significant real-estate investment, coming from a multitude of internal, as well as external, sources — most notably, Asia.

Of course, no CTBUH conference in Australia would be complete without considering Melbourne or Brisbane, the country’s other premier urban laboratories. Thus, the fourth and fifth days of the conference comprised regional programming in those cities. There, three half-day segments focused on unique themes, encompassing expansive tours, site visits and technical demonstrations. For in-depth conference information, including an expansive photo gallery, visit 2017.ctbuh.org.

KONE UltraRope, JumpLift Employed in Melbourne Project

KONE has been awarded a contract for a Melbourne project that will incorporate UltraRope® and JumpLift technology, along with 21 elevators and four escalators. Located at 477 Collins Street, the Grimshaw Architects-designed Olderfleet development involves a 40-story, 158-m-tall office tower for Mirvac rising from the 1880s façades of heritage buildings. The new structure will have 58,544 m2 of office space on 38 floors, as well as retail, a childcare center and a gym. It will be served by 12 MiniSpace® and nine MonoSpace® elevators, four TravelMasterTM 110 escalators and four Access® destination-control systems. Axel Berkling, executive vice president of KONE Asia Pacific, observed the building “represents a fantastic integration of the new with the historic to provide a unique urban experience.”

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