Asia is undergoing a dramatic and rapid urbanization. Across the continent, there is unrelenting, large-scale migration from the countryside to the cities. Asian cities are getting denser and growing taller at a scale and intensity without historical precedent, and existing urban architectural and planning models struggle to accommodate the increased population. To continue recycling these models in the face of this challenge will lead to devastating effects on land, infrastructure, and the environment.
The Vertical Cities Asia International Design Competition and Symposium was created to encourage design explorations and research into the prospects of new architectural and planning models for the increasingly vertical, dense and intense urban environments of Asia.
The theme of the inaugural edition of the programme is "Everyone Needs Fresh Air", which is of particular relevance for the congested post-SARS cities of Asia where urban sprawl, traffic and environmental pollution threaten the prospects of biodiversity, greenry, liveability and general well-being of the inhabitants.
This publication brings together the spectrum of innovative design and theoretical approaches proposed by the participating universities: The Chinese University of Hong Kong, ETH Zurich, National University of Singapore, Tongji University, Tokyo University, Tsinghua University, TU Delft, University of California Berkeley, University of Michigan, and University of Pennsylvania.