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World’s tallest building proposal hangs a megatall on an asteroid (seriously)

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We're speechless

All renderings courtesy Cloud Architecture Office

Architects and developers are constantly battling height restrictions and zoning laws to build new tall towers, but one firm has decided to take it to a whole new level—to space, to be precise.

In a mind boggling new conceptual proposal, architecture firm Clouds Architecture Office has proposed suspending the world’s tallest tower from an asteroid (yep, you read that right). Dezeen first reported on this dizzying (literally, we imagine) proposal. Per the architect’s pie-in-the-sky (or should we say tower in the sky?) plan, the tower would be built out of Dubai due to the low cost of construction, and would then be sent into orbit over parts of North and South America, passing over New York City.

To conceptualize the building, Clouds AO directed their thought to the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission, that made it possible to land on a spinning comet, and NASA’s proposed Asteroid Redirect Mission that would make it possible to capture and redirect the orbit of an asteroid.

The proposal calls for a top down approach to construction. Cables attached to the asteroid would hold the structure, which would be assembled in modules sent up from earth. Once construction is complete, the building (along with the asteroid) would orbit in a figure eight pattern over North and South America, and the slowest and lowest part of this trajectory would take place over Midtown Manhattan like so:

The orbit is where the building gets its name from as well—Analemma Tower, analemma being the word for the figure 8 orbital pattern. Now, how in the world do people get off this spaceship-skyscraper-home? They parachute down naturally, with the orbit set to be programmed as such that the tower would arrive in New York during office hours. Alternately, people would also use large drones to get on and off the building, Ostap Rudakevych, one of the founding members of Clouds AO, told Curbed.

The lower portion of the building would be offices, the apartments would be located two-thirds of the way up, and the top portion of the building would be reserved for religious establishments or funerary services, according to Dezeen. Atmospheric pressure would of course require different portions of the building to be built differently, and the size and shape of windows have been designed accordingly like so:

The building would be powered through solar panels located higher up on the tower, so there would be an uninterrupted supply of energy. Analemma Tower would get its water supply from cloud condensation and rainwater, and electromagnetic elevators would run throughout the course of this building.

While NASA has yet to comment on this proposal, this isn’t Clouds AO’s first foray into space architecture by any means. The firm has already won a NASA Mars habitat contest for their design of an ice home on the planet.

This is the second out-there proposal we’ve laid our eyes on in as many weeks with the Big Bend skyscraper proposal coming just a few weeks ago, about a curvy supertall on Billionaires’ Row.

So what do you make of all of this? What burning questions and observations do you have? Sound off in the comments section below!