TikTok engineer reveals ‘greenwashing’ behind Singapore’s skyscrapers

Is there such a thing as a truly sustainable building?

In a video on TikTok, user @brogantheengineer – an actual chartered structural engineer – explained that while some developments claim to be “sustainable”, the truth is really not that green. 

@brogantheengineer Replying to @user646026111 ♬ original sound – Brogan 👷🏻‍♀️

She addressed the greenwashing behind Singapore’s 8 Shenton Way, soon-to-be the tallest skyscraper in the city that claims to be “sustainable” and will be reusing part of the existing foundation from AXA Tower. 

AXA Tower is an iconic cylindrical in city with a lot of history. It was built in 1986 and was known as the Treasury Building for the Ministry of Finance. Later on the building had some significant tenants like advertising agency BBDO World and also the Belgian Embassy.

Brogan explained in the video the harmful effects of demolishing a building. In 2021 alone, Singapore produced one million tones of construction demolition waste. She added that the addiction to demolition is “trashing heritage”, “polluting the planet” and also “crushing communities”. 

Even though part of the existing building will still be reused, Brogan said that there’s nothing sustainable about the building when you’ve had to demolish a perfectly good building in the first place. 

“I can’t even begin to tell you how hard cylindrical towers are to design as well,” she enthused. 

She suggested that instead of destroying the existing building – or at least part of it – the building could’ve been kept and redesigned into an optimised new building. 

Overall, she feels that “poor effort” was taken when dealing with the building.

Surprisingly, almost everyone in the comment section agreed with her sentiments. 

What do you think? Do we need more shiny new buildings?

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