The dynamic duo of Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill both have decades of experience under their belts driving aesthetically dazzling projects with astounding technical proficiency.

Founded in 2006, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture is relatively fresh on the scene within the industry, but its acclaimed body of work is already impressive in scope and quantity.

Adrian Smith, the older of the two principals, left the Chicago-based architecture firm Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM) in 2006 along with Gill to start their own firm. While at SOM, Smith designed the Burj Khalifa, the tallest man-made structure in the world, and the Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai, one of China’s tallest towers.

Is it obvious yet that these guys specialize in the supertall?

Another key component of the firm’s philosophy is a commitment to energy-efficient and sustainable architecture. “We strive to create designs that aid society, advance modern technology, sustain the environment and inspire those around us to improve our world,” the firm’s site says under the “Vision” section.

Inspired? Just wait until you see these designs…

Kingdom Tower, Jeddah

kingdom tower
At 3,230 feet in height, the Kingdom Tower is slated to be 568 feet taller than the Burj Khalifa. Clearly, Adrian Smith’s only competition in the supertall arena right now is himself. The tower will be the centerpiece of the $20 billion Kingdom City development in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Once complete, it will contain 59 elevators, some travelling as quickly as 10 meters per second, and 5.7 million feet of space.

Rendering: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

Dancing Dragons, Seoul

dancing dragons
The firm blended contemporary design with traditional Korean culture in the plans for these two supertall skyscrapers in the Yongsan International Business District in Seoul. Dancing Dragons recently earned Smith + Gill an American Architecture Award. These towers aren’t slated for completion until 2024 and by then, other stunning skyscraper designs by Danish architecture firm BIG and and Rotterdam-based MVRDV within the Yongsan International Business District will secure Seoul’s place on any globetrotting high-rise lover’s itinerary.

Rendering: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects

Qintai International Tower, Wuhan

qintai international tower
The firm won the design competition to construct the Qintai International Tower, a five-star hotel and office building that will rise 248 meters above the central Chinese city of Wuhan. Smith + Gill are considering several sustainable features to incorporate into the design including solar hot water roof panels, natural filtration through landscape features and storm water and condensate collection systems.

Rendering: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects

Tianfu Ecological City, Chengdu

tianfu ecological city

Smith + Gill’s work isn’t limited to designing supertall skyscrapers — far from it, in fact. Tianfu Ecological City is a self-sustaining satellite city planned for the outskirts of Chengdu, China. Touted as “environmentally sensitive,” the city will use 48 percent less energy, 58 percent less water and produce 89 percent less land fill waste than a conventional development of a similar population. Possibly the coolest part of this master plan is that any location within the city to any other location will be walkable within 15 minutes, eliminating the need for most vehicles.

Rendering: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects

Clean Technology Tower, Chicago

clean technology tower
If Smith + Gill’s commitment to sustainable design wasn’t already apparent, behold the firm’s prototype design for a Clean Technology Tower. Architects designed the tower specifically for Chicago, but this type of tower could be built around the world as its guiding principles and technologies are universal. As the name would suggest, the tower is totally decked out with green features including wind turbines and a domed double roof that capable of creating what Smith + Gill describe as a rooftop wind farm, harnessing natural forces to increase energy efficiency. The design has been kicking around for a few years now, so hopefully we’ll see a keen developer pick up on it soon.

Rendering: Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects

Hungry for more extraordinary architectural feats? Check out our look at the eye-popping work of Zaha Hadid Architects.

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