Location: Shanghai, China
Collaborators: Andrea Destefanis, Filippo Gabbiani, Li Wei, Puikie Wu
Local architect: Shanghai Xiandai Design Institute
Area: 38,800 sqm
Project Year: 2006
Photographs: Charlie Xia
The reconversion of an old factory is a kind of Aikido strategy where you use your enemy’s energy for your own purposes. Instead of fighting it, you take all the energy and shape it in unexpected and new ways.
With the incredible pace of development that has hit Shanghai in recent years, many industrial compounds formerly located at the edge of the city are today located in areas becoming more and more strategic for the re-evaluation of the city. Historical industrial sites often established strong symbolic relations with the community and at the same time thanks to the particular morphology of these architectures are characterized by a rich architectural environment that creates very convenient opportunities for functional renovation. Located at the heart of the Xuhui district, this large site of 12,780 sqm area with almost 40,000 sqm of construction area were the former premises of the Three Guns textile factories. Having seen is enormous development potential, in 2006 a company was jointly formed by the Xuhui District Government, the Shangtex Holding Co. Ltd. and the Jie Fang Daily News Paper Group specifically with the target to reconvert this textile production factory into a creative fashion design center, able to promote the growing Chinese design potential and at the same time to become a point of attraction for the city able to host a multi-functional living concept, represented today by the successful landmark HighstreetLOFT.