Chinese Skyscraper Fire

Last week whilst Victoria burned, so did Beijing.

The TVCC tower, designed by Rem Koolhaas (OMA) was set alight by ‘illegal’ fireworks set off for the Chinese New Year celebrations.

It is believed that no lives were lost, the building was under construction. Chinese media is being VERY quiet about the whole thing, ironically the building next door (my favouritest buidling ever) will be the headquarters for the CCTV (Chinese Central Television). The building that burned was a hotel and theatre complex and part of the overall masterplan for the CCTV site.

Here’s how it was looking :

Here it is on fire :

This is the aftermath :

Clearly fire’s don’t only happen in the bush, but it’s an interesting contrast. The bush will take many many decades to repair, the hole left by lives lost will never repair. At least this can be rebuilt.


  • peter
    peterabout 6 years ago

    I was in Shanghai for one Chinese New Year … the entire horizon was ablaze with fireworks. It was like a war zone … I’m amazed that more buildings don’t burn down.

  • Me too Pete, this might change the way they do things.

    – sjem ©

  • jemimalovesbigted
    jemimalovesbigtedabout 6 years ago

    that CCTV building is hella good! what an amazing shape!!

  • Sexy innit ? The diagonal shapes on the facade reveal the way the structure works to hold the whole thing up. More dense where the structure (and therefore loads) are strongest and more sparse where the structure is least.

    – sjem ©

  • onetonshadow
    onetonshadowabout 6 years ago

    …and it still didn’t fall down…

  • The structure for this building and the one next door went through extremely rigorous testing for earthquakes, so I reckon that’s the only thing that stopped it from completely imploding.

    – sjem ©

  • ayarti
    ayartiabout 6 years ago

    Wow, the damage to that building is immense. I assume the structural assets will all be fairly intact, but by the looks of it all the cosmetic bits (outer shell) are completely destroyed and would have to be replaced. Scary stuff.

  • najeroux
    najerouxabout 6 years ago

    I’m amazed that no one was injured or killed. Mind you, if there were casualties, would the Chinese government actually let on about it? By the way, I just had a massive mouthful of sour strawberry oak milk and will be heading to Melbs on 27th Feb-1st March should the Pint consumption colective happen to take place…


  • Excellent news re : Melbourne. I will be in touch.

    – sjem ©

  • Scott Robinson
    Scott Robinsonabout 6 years ago

    Not to make any light of this, but that middle picture reminds me of a tower seige from Lord of the rings (without the ents of course)..

  • Danny
    Dannyabout 6 years ago

    I was going to say how it reminded me of a fire fountain from the old “cracker nights”
    but yes I agree with Scott that picture has a trace element of Peter Jackson about it.

  • onetonshadow
    onetonshadowabout 6 years ago

    Yes, I was rather thinking of the WTC.

  • mister  khan
    mister khanabout 6 years ago

    actually it’s chinese govt propaganda stunt underhandedly promoting the use of cgi fireworks instead of the real thing. the ‘burnt building’ thing is a total fake. get with the pogrom.

  • mister  khan
    mister khanabout 6 years ago

    you’ll notice scott robinson’s own observations undoubtedly support this hypothesis.