Kazakhstan Utopia Debuts

Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa designed a utopian vision interweaving the city and nature. Three years after his death, his vision is complete. Rowan More of the Observer pays Astana, the new capital, a visit.
August 9, 2010, 12pm PDT | Tim Halbur
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Rowan asks, "...can a city, in all its teeming complexity, really be planned? Or does the attempt lead only to a synthetic simulacrum, a kind-of city that is not quite the real thing?"

Nonetheless, Rowan is surprised by the boldness of Kurokawa's vision:

"To look at, Astana is so strange that it has one grasping for images. It's a space station, marooned in an ungraspable expanse of level steppe, its name (to English speakers) having the invented sound of a science fiction writer's creation. It's a city of fable or dream, as recounted by Marco Polo to Kublai Khan."

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Published on Monday, August 9, 2010 in The Guardian U.K.
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