Though already home to the world's largest building, the Middle Kingdom could soon receive the world's tallest pair of towers too, courtesy of UK-based Chetwoods Architects and its Phoenix Towers concept. Set for Wuhan, Central China, the larger of the two towers reaches a Burj Khalifa-besting 1 km (3,280 ft) in height, and sports an ambitious list of sustainable technology.

The towers cover 7 hectares (17 acres) of ground on a 47-hectare (116-acre) plot that sits upon an island in a lake. In an attempt to make the design of the towers more relevant to Chinese culture, Chetwoods drew upon the Fenghuang (or Chinese Phoenix) mythological bird and designated the larger tower Feng (male), and the smaller tower Huang (female).

The top section of each tower will be given over to environmental technology, with some the green tech name-checked by Chetwoods including lightweight photovoltaic cladding, biodynamic pollution-absorbing coatings, thermal chimneys, wind turbines, water harvesting and recycling, waste recycling, and hydrogen fuel cells.

According to the firm, all of the above would allow the towers to generate all required energy, with the larger Feng tower transferring some of its energy to the smaller Huang tower. In addition, an undisclosed amount of energy would be given to the surrounding area, presumably by exporting it to the local grid like the Energy Bunker.

We'll be keen to see if this indeed plays out should the proposal go ahead, and plan on delving further into the project if it does.

At present, the architects are still awaiting final approval from the Mayor of Wuhan. If all goes well, ground should be broken next year, and construction is expected to take at least three years. The total estimated budget is US$1.2 billion.

Source: Chetwoods Architects