Set to become a dramatic civic focal point for the capital of Kazakhstan, the soaring structure rises from a 200m elliptical base to form the highest peak on the skyline of Astana. The 100,000sqm centre’s unique concept to provide a sheltered environment embracing an urban-scale internal park, shopping and entertainment venue, was developed in response to the harsh climate of extreme weather in both winter and summer. Held by a mast, the vast tent-like cable net structure is clad in ETFE, a material that allows light to wash the interior spaces while sheltering them from extreme weather conditions. At the core of the building is a large flexible space that will form the cultural hub of the centre, accommodating a varied programme of events and exhibitions. Complemented by 40,000sqm of retail space with a wide range of cafes, restaurants and cinemas, as well as ample covered car park facilities.