WBC - World Business Center

Busan, South Korea

Asymptote's competition winning design for the new World Business Center Busan (WBCB) proposes a 560m tall tower that would place the project as among the tallest towers in Asia.


The innovative approach to the design of the WBCB tower challenges conventional models of such buildings confronting notions of monumentality, singularity and the banality of rectilinear prismatic approaches. 


The Asymptote proposal is comprised of three separate, tapered towers rising out of a base building from the 50th floor and bundled for structural strength. At the top of the base building a public sky lobby provides spectacular views of the surrounding city and expansive vistas to the mountains and sea beyond. It is from this dramatic vantage point that the three slender towers rise even higher, gracefully tapering upwards framing a spectacular central void space and sky gardens. 


Initially the design was instigated as a calligraphic gesture in sketch form where the strokes of brush formed the first inklings of the resulting architecture that emerged as a strong abstract figure with a cultural nuance and pertinence set within the city fabric. The composition was inspired by the beauty and grandeur of the BUsan skyline, as this coastal city confronts on one side a backdrop of mountains and nature while on the other side the open and expansive sea. 



Date: 2007


Size: 289,000 sqm


Location: Busan, South Korea


Architect: Asymptote Architecture


Design: Hani Rashid, Lise Anne Couture


Project Director: Theo Lalis Sarantoglou, Keeyhun Ahn


Design Team: Keeyhun Ahn, Theo Lalis Sarantoglou, Klaus Ransmayr


Angie Co, Andrew Bryant, Kasper Ax, Elise Delestre, Alessandro Gess,

Martin Henn



Client: Solomon Group


Local Architects: Gansam and Junglim Architects Seoul


MEP and Structural engineer: Arup New York


Façade Consultant: Front, Inc. New York


Vertical Transportation: Lerch, Bates and Associates Inc.​








The WBC World Business Center Tower was  awarded the 2008 American Architecture Award by the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design.