China’s housing boom sparks crazy construction

They include Pangu Plaza, used during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, which has been voted in a new survey by Chinese architects Archcy as one of the ugliest buildings in China.

The Beijing Tianzi Hotel took home the title of ugliest building in 2012. The towering structure is fronted by three giant men representing prosperity, happiness and career achievement.

Photo credit: The Poke (Twitter)

But the new headquarters for The People’s Daily has aroused the most interest.

The Communist Party newspaper’s home is still being erected, but it’s resemblance to a particular part of the male body has people questioning its design.

Its appearance is complemented by one of Beijing’s other prominent landmarks: the China Central TV offices, also known as The Big Underpants.

“It seems the People’s Daily is going to rise up,” one Chinese internet user is quoted by The Telegraph . “There’s hope for the Chinese dream.”

Photo credit: MJanieC

But for many Chinese residents in the central cities, the dream is still to own a house – and that demand is helping to fuel the country’s construction boom.

Indeed, house prices climbed in 68 out of the 70 cities covered by the National Bureau Statistics in March 2013. Lending jumped 12.8 per cent in January, Forbes reports. And now, according to a new survey published at the beginning of May, house prices are 5 per cent above April 2012.

The growth comes as the country builds and expands to meet demand from what Business Insider has declared “the largest wave of urbanisation in human history”.

“Pressure from risks posed by property loans is still rising. These potential risks cannot be neglected,” Wang Zhaoxing, a vice-chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission, was quoted by China Daily last month.

Photo credit: The_Handbag (Twitter)

As a result, the government is still taking measures to try and cool down the market. Beijing is banning single personal households from buying multiple homes, while Shanghai is telling banks to refuse credit to third-home buyers. At the same time , both cities have introduced a 20pc capital gains tax on real estate transactions.

But while the government tries to limit market speculation, more extravagant pieces of architecture keep popping up. The new Phoenix International Media Centre is set to be completed this year in Beijing.

Its shape? A round structure that, appropriately enough, resembles something not entirely unlike a bubble.