Chinese Developer Pirates Plans for Hadid Project

Counterfeiting is, of course, nothing new in China. From DVDs to Apple stores to an entire Austrian village, the country is rife with copycats. But a new project in Chongqing may take the cake, reports Kevin Holden Platt.

Platt reports in the audacious copying of Zaha Hadid's design for Wangjing SOHO, an office and retail complex in Beijing comprised of "three towers that resemble curved sails," that is currently under constriction. The culprit, in this case, appears to be Chongqing Meiquan, the developer behind the similarly styled Meiquan 22nd Century project, which is also under contruction.

"Zhang Xin, the billionaire property developer who heads SOHO China and commissioned Hadid to design the complex, lashed out against the pirates during the Galaxy [another Hadid-designed project] opening: 'Even as we build one of Zaha's projects, it is being replicated in Chongqing,' a megacity near the eastern edge of the Tibetan plateau. At this point in time, she added, the pirates of Chongqing are building faster than SOHO. The original is set for completion in 2014."

According to Platt, "Zhang has issued an open appeal for help in combatting this massive, open counterfeiting operation, and lamented: 'Everyone says that China is a great copycat country, and that it can copy anything.'"

Full Story: Copycat Architects in China Take Aim at the Stars


Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
DVD Cover of The Story of Sprawl

The Story of Sprawl

See how America changed shape in this collection of historic films that visually document how sprawl evolved.
$29.99 for 2-DVD SET
Book cover of Where Things Are from Near to Far

Where Things Are From Near to Far

This engaging children's book about planning illustrates that "every building has its place."