Artist’s conception of the finished Sky City in Changsha
JISHOU, HUNAN — From the Shanghaiist, developers have been given a go-ahead to build a 2,749-foot, 202-story building in Changsha, the provincial capital of Hunan.
It will then be just a wee bit taller than the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, making the Changsha project, Sky City, the world’s tallest building. Once it’s completed, China will have two skyscrapers (or four, if you include Hong Kong and Taiwan as most mainlanders might) among the top ten tallest buildings.
Changsha has no buildings that come even close to this height, so Sky City will certainly, um, stand out from the crowd. That part of Hunan is also relatively flat, so Sky City will be visible for miles around.
(Frankly, I am surprised Beijing is letting Changsha go ahead with this project. I’d have assumed the powers-that-be would prefer a showcase skyscraper like this one be in a major metropolis like Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing or Guangzhou.)
More details are at Treehugger.com. The builder is Broad Sustainable Construction, a Chinese firm which specializes in prefab construction. BSC claims they will be able to finish Sky City in seventh months, and that the “vertical city” of 30,000 residents will more environmentally friendly than China’s usual urban sprawl.
Whether there will be that many occupants remains to be see. China is littered with vacant high-rises in almost every major city because housing costs are too high for most Chinese to afford.
JISHOU, HUNAN — I haven’t done much blogging lately, despite having a lot to blog about, what with my daughter’s boffo wedding and some nice traveling afterward. I was just too busy, or too tired. Even this post is a bit of a cop-out, since it features a video.
Last week, a group of professors and students from Wayne State College (Nebraska) came for a visit, as part of a two-week tour of China. Among them were Max and Karen, who had taught her two years ago. The university invited the visitors to a demonstration of classical Chinese arts, and I took video of each performance. Depending on how good my connection to YouTube is, I intend to showcase what we saw here.
This first one is a performance of Miao drumming. The Miao are a minority group in this part of China. Then comes a bamboo dance, which is common around Asia. The performers are students from the Music and Dance College.
JISHOU, HUNAN — In Sangzi, Loudi, Hunan, which is a few hours from here by bus, children have to climb ladders up the side of a mountain to get to school. Watch this video, courtesy of The Guardian and Reuters.
Hunan is a mountainous province, so we’re used to climbing hills, but the last time I took a trip like that was visiting a park in Zhangjiajie. Those ladders were metal, had safety cages around them and the angle was less steep. These kids are negotiating 70-meter (229-foot) vertical drops in some places.
I can only imagine what they’ll tell their grandkids: “You think you have it rough? When I was a boy, I had to climb up ladders 300 meters to get to school — coming and going!”
I’m including a screencap from Google Maps to show where Sangzi lies in relation to Jishou. Jishou is on the left (west) and the red pin is Sangzi village. If you want the satellite view, enter “Sangzi, Loudi, Hunan, China” in Google Maps.
JISHOU, HUNAN — Well-to-do Chinese love to dote on their “little emperors and empresses,” but one Chinese mother has raised the bar by purchasing a $6.5 million Manhattan condo for her daughter to live in while she is in college.
Her daughter is two years old.
Apparently, this doting mother expects her darling to attend Columbia, NYU or Harvard, according to news reports. (Mom needs to brush up on American geography, I suspect.)
The property in question hasn’t even been built yet. According to CBS News, it’s the proposed One57 project, a rectangular glass-and-steel monolith overlooking Central Park south.
Sorry, I have no nude photos of Mr Chiwayo or his partner
JISHOU, HUNAN — Chinese people already have a pretty poor opinion of Africans, and South Africa’s consul-general to China has not helped matters.
Lassy Chiwayo (at left, with his partner) was allegedly caught three months ago wandering naked near his home in Shanghai. Chiwayo also allegedly assaulted the South African ambassador to China, Bheki Langa, at a Beijing function.
So, according to news sources in China and South Africa, he’s been ordered home (some say deported, but it’s not clear) and relieved of his duties. The official word is that he’s experiencing medical problems that have caused his erratic behavior.
Chiwayo denies he’s done anything wrong, and insists he is still consul-general to China, although he is now in Pretoria.
And the only reason I am blogging this tidbit is that I get to mention China and South Africa, where I have both lived, in the same post.