Lord Norman Foster, the acclaimed architect responsible for Chek Lap Kok airport and the HSBC Tower, has won the contest to redesign West Kowloon's waterfront with a glittering $24 billion creation. The design's dominant feature is what will be the world's largest roof, a transparent canopy stretching the site's entire 1.3km and covering 30 hectares. The choice of the Foster and Partners design, one of 161 entries from around the world, was announced yesterday. It was sponsored by Sun Hung Kai Properties. The open-sided canopy will house an avenue of shops and restaurants leading to a man-made lagoon and five theatres on the site's western tip. Lord Foster, speaking on a trip to Europe yesterday, said the roof would control both 'the climate and identity of the place'. 'It works aerodynamically to create a cool breeze when appropriate, will provide protection from the rain, provide shade against the sun,' he said. He said he saw the complex as a 'social magnet'. 'The idea is to create a mixture of what makes a public place a destination . . . a rich mixture of activities that will seek to make a place deliver around the clock.' The whole structure will be low-rise - in contrast to the MTRC's planned 102-storey West Kowloon station, which towers over the site. Secretary for Planning and Lands John Tsang Chun-wah said construction was estimated to cost $24 billion, but it would yield an annual $2.5 billion from its shops and theatres. He said a working group would draft a master plan based on Lord Foster's design.