photos by Karim Yergaliyev
Developed by Foster + Partners to be a center piece for the new capital city of Astana, Kazakhstan, the project had to withstand the extreme temperature swings of the elevated and arid region. Although the outside temperature varies from -35 degrees to +35 degrees Celsius, the interior maintains a hospitable 15-30 degrees. To prevent condensation in the winter, three translucent layers of ethylene tetrafluoroethylene fabric or EFTE act to channel warm air. In the summer, cooler air displaces the hot air vented from the top. The transparency and scale of the tent stands out in the skyline like a beacon, changing colors at night and streaming in natural light during the day.