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Symobilic context

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Designing contextual tall buildings does present dilemmas. As Bill Pedersen told the tall buildings conference held in Melbourne last week, the top of KPF's International Financial Centre in Shanghai, for a Japanese developer, has a hole in it, partly to reduce wind resistance but also to represent the Chinese symbol of the sky.

However, the locals interpreted the hole as a rising sun - a bridge has now been designed to alter the symbolism. Contextual design, however, was not on everyone's agenda. 'The completed building looks like it could be anywhere in the world but it is actually in Columbo, Sri Lanka, ' said one speaker proudly.

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