Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat

CTBUH UK with Zaha Hadid Architects:
Tall Towers as Catalyst for Social Interaction


5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Monday, May 8, 2017

Location: ZHA Gallery
101 Goswell Road
London EC1V 7EZ
United Kingdom
Organizers: CTBUH United Kingdom and Zaha Hadid Architects

This evening lecture aims to create a platform for professionals and clients to present and discuss with a selected audience the topic, Tall Towers as Catalyst for Social Interaction.

The lecture will explore the interaction between tall towers and the creation of places for social interaction in order to facilitate higher communication and the exchange of ideas that will augment the power of collective intelligence. The proposition is to investigate how contemporary forms of social communication can inform the design of tall buildings, and how the tower typology itself can induce new forms of interaction and communication.

The collective intelligence of a society is directly related to finding a realm where communication, collaboration, and interaction between individuals and groups can flourish. Skyscrapers are one of the answers to the need for high density. Tall towers need to be thoughtfully modified to fully embrace the idea of social sustainability and the creation of contemporary urban hubs. Improving the ways in which digital and physical spaces interact is essential in also improving the lives of those who live, work, and play in tall buildings, but this goal does pose significant design challenges.

In this discussion, we will aim to answer the following questions:

  • How can design transform isolated tall towers in the urban landscape into thriving vertical villages and hubs of ideas?
  • Can we design towers to keep the spatial qualities of the human-scaled village while maintaining the energy of an active metropolis?

For more information, including details about the speakers, please see the flyer.




City Planner:





Patrik Schumacher, Principal, ZHA

Stephen Andrews
, Project Design Executive, Canary Wharf Group

Peter Rees
Professor of Places and City Planning,
UCL Faculty of the Built Environment

Hanif Kara
, Co-Founder and Director, AKTII

imon Lay
, Director, Olsson Fire & Risk UK

Nick Wirth
, Founder and President, Wirth Research

Viviana Muscettola, Accociate Director, Zaha Hadid Architects

There will be a question and answer session as the presentations conclude, followed by networking and drinks.