Sunday, May 6, 2007

News from incheon , Korea

The New York office of Hellmuth, Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. (HOK) is designing seven new buildings in Incheon, Korea. The six mixed-use towers and hotel will be part of New Songdo City, a $25-billion master-planned international business district developed by Gale International and POSCO E&C. Gale International is headquartered in New York with offices in Boston; Irvine, California; Seoul and New Songdo, South Korea.

Three of the mixed-use towers, located on the north side of New Songdo’s Central Park (the city's main public park) are scheduled to begin construction in May 2007. The towers, which form a gateway to the northern residential neighborhood of the city, are intended to set an international high quality standard of living and design prototype.

Taking full advantage of the southern exposure, the towers will become one of the prime residential addresses in the city, providing direct views of the park and beyond. The towers will accommodate housing, live-in work amenities and retail space. Sales of the 900 units are scheduled to begin in May 2007, with estimated completion of the project in 2009. Kenneth Drucker, design director at HOK New York, describes the sets of towers as "an incredible opportunity to define the northern edge of Central Park as the 'Fifth Avenue' of New Songdo City."

Located on the south side of Central Park, the Convention Center Hotel is already under construction and pursuing the goal of becoming the first LEED® certified hotel in Korea. The 25-story hotel tower will have a total of 23 occupied floors and a two-story rooftop mechanical area and roof screen. The hotel will contain 322 guestrooms, eight percent of which will be suites; as well as a presidential suite and executive lounge on the top floors. Typical hotel rooms will average 380 sq. ft. and will each include a four fixture bathroom.

Hotel amenities will be located on the five lower levels, including two ballrooms, function rooms, a spa, gym facilities, a covered swimming pool, two restaurants and a lounge bar. The kitchens, food and beverage preparation and administration areas will be connected through a service corridor on each floor, and support services will be located on the two basement levels.

HOK’s Convention Center Hotel is part of a group of buildings that will also include the Convention Center, a 65-story, mixed-use residential and office tower, the Northeast Asia Trade Tower, and a retail mall. The three buildings will be connected through a series of plazas and open landscaped areas, as well as a single below-grade parking structure spanning the entire area. The hotel is estimated for completion in 2009.

While Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates created the master plan for New Songdo City, HOK New York is acting as the design architect in designing over 3 million sq. ft. in the six towers and hotel along Central Park, with ARUP handling the structural and curtainwall design; Dong-Il Architects acting as the Korean Associate Architect for residential work on the towers; and Baum Architects acting as the Associate Architects for the first hotel.

New Songdo City, being built on 1,500 acres of reclaimed land along the Yellow Sea, is positioned to become the hub of Northeast Asia. The largest private real estate development in history, New Songdo is located at the site of General MacArthur’s 1950 landing. New Songdo will be larger than the city of Boston when completed and will include 50 million sq. ft. of office space, 30 million sq. ft. of residential space, 10 million sq. ft. of retail space, five million sq. ft. of hotel space and 10 million sq. ft. of public space. Every conceivable cultural and recreational amenity will be available including a world class hospital, two international preparatory schools and a 100-acre Central Park with a world class aquarium and art museum.

courtesy - Contract magazine

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