Catching up on some late-December news (how dare the world keep spinning during vacation?): The city of Moscow approved plans for Crystal Island, a 27-million-square-foot complex designed by the fellow behind London’s notorious Gherkin. Set to include 3,000 hotel rooms, 900 apartments, an international school for 500 students, theaters, offices, and stores, the gargantuan development is, said architect Norman Foster in a company press release, “a paradigm of compact, mixed-use, sustainable city planning, with an innovative energy strategy and ‘smart’ skin which buffers against climate extremes.”