Steven Holl Architects announces the winning design for the Vanke Center, a progressive new sustainable mixed-use complex in Shenzhen, China on the South China Sea. The firm was selected from a small list of invited firms including MVRDV (The Netherlands) and HAE (China). Vanke Center, set to break ground in April 2007, is located on a 60,000 sq meter site on the Chinese coast. The building, a floating horizontal skyscraper, will contain a conference center, hotel, serviced apartments and offices.
Hovering over a tropical garden, this ‘horizontal skyscraper’ – as long as the Empire State Building is tall – is a hybrid building including apartments, a hotel, and offices for the headquarters for China Vanke Co. ltd. A conference center, spa and parking are located under the large green, tropical landscape which is characterized by mounds containing restaurants and a 500 seat auditorium. The building appears as if it were once floating on a higher sea that has now subsided; leaving the structure propped up high on eight legs.
The decision to float one large structure right under the 35-meter height limit, instead of several smaller structures each catering to a specific program, generates the largest possible green space open to the public on the ground level.
Suspended on eight cores, as far as 50 meters apart, the building’s structure is a combination of cable-stay bridge technology merged with a high-strength concrete frame. The first structure of its type, its has tension cables carrying a record load of 3280 tons. The underside of the floating structure becomes its main elevation – the sixth elevation – from which ‘Shenzhen Windows’, offer 360-degree views over the lush tropical landscape below. A public path beginning at the “dragon’s head” will connect through the hotel and the apartment zones up to the office wings.
As a tropical strategy, the building and the landscape integrate several new sustainable aspects. A micro-climate is created by cooling ponds fed by a greywater system. The building has a green roof with solar panels and uses local materials such as bamboo. The glass façade of the building will be protected against the sun and wind by porous louvers. The building is a Tsunami-proof hovering architecture that creates a porous micro-climate of public open landscape. It is one of the first LEED platinum rated buildings in Southern China.Location: Shenzhen, China Architect: Steven Holl Architects Client: Shenzhen Vanke Real Estate Co.
Partner in charge: Li Hu
Project manager: Yimei Chan, Gong Dong Project architect – SD/DD: Garrick Ambrose
Project architect – DD: Maren Koehler, Jay Siebenmorgen
Project architect – CD: Christopher Brokaw, Rodolfo Dias
Assistant project architect: Eric Li Project team: Jason Anderson, Guanlan Cao, Clemence Eliard, Forrest Fulton,
Nick Gelpi, M. Emran Hossain, Kelvin Jia, Seung Hyun Kang,
JongSeo Lee, Wan-Jen Lin, Richard Liu, Jackie Luk, Chris
McVoy, Enrique Moya-Angeler, Roberto Requejo, Michael
Rusch, Jiangtao Shen, Filipe Taboada, Manta Weihermann
Project team, competition phase: Steven Holl, Li Hu, Gong Dong, Justin Allen, Garrick Ambrose,
Johnna Brazier, Kefei Cai, Yenling Chen, Hideki Hirahara, Eric
Li, Filipe Taboada Associate architects: CCDI
Climate engineers: Transsolar
Structural engineer (sd/dd): CABR
Structural engineer (cd/ca): CCDI
Mechanical engineer: CCDI
Landscape architect: Steven Holl Architects
Curtain wall consultant: Shenyang Yuanda Aluminum Industry Engineering Co., Ltd.
Lighting consultant: L’Observatoire International
Program: mixed-use building including hotel, offices, serviced apartments,
and public park
Project type: competition
Building area (square):1296459sf/120445sm
Landscape area (square): 559723sf/52000sm
Public green space (square): 509004sf/47288sm
Size conference center (square): 89254sf/8292sm
Size condominiums (square): 276676sf/25704sm
Size hotel (square): 119619sf/11113sm
Size soho offices (square): 146292sf/13591sm
Size vanke headquarters: 149338sf/13874sm