The emergence of China on the global economic stage has been discussed at nauseum in myriad publications. But this emergence has had an impact on the world of architecture, providing a testing ground where architects can experiment with new ideas about sustainability and urban growth. These new ideas have been realized in recently completed structures, and more are just beginning construction or have been proposed for the future. More on these new buildings after the break.
Architect: Mochen Architects & Engineers
Location: Beijing, China
Structural/Mechanical/Electrical/Civil Engineer: Mochen Architects & Engineers
Client： Mochen Architects & Engineers
Project Year: 2005
Project Area: 3396 sqm
Photographs: Shu He, Lin Mingshu
This week, with the help of our readers, our Architecture City Guide is headed to Beijing. Beijing has a range of architectural styles, but the three most prevalent are the traditional imperial style (the Forbidden City), the “Sino-Sov” style (boxy structures built between the 1950s and 70s), and lastly the explosion of a modern corporate style that is punctuated with Starchitect buildings like OMA’s CCTV TV Station HQ. We put together a list of 12 modern/contemporary buildings that we feel provides a good starting point. It is far from complete. There are dozens of other great buildings that are not our list, and we are looking to add to the list in the near future. Please add your favorites in the comment section below so we can add them on the second go around. Again thank you to all our readers who sent in their suggestions and photographs. The city guides would not be possible without your help.
Inspired by the unprecedentedly rapid urbanization process undergoing in China, Beijing-based Chinese architect and artist Li Han of Atelier 11 | China has developed a series of drawings on the subject of urban landscapes. The purpose of the series is to record the phenomena Li found interesting and representative in this urbanization process. With techniques and visual languages borrowed from architectural drawings, Li tries to present the spontaneous interaction between the urban environment and human activities. The drawings are not only objective documentations, but also reflections and scenarios on the future development based on the current facts. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Next week we will be taking our Architecture City Guide to Beijing and we need your help. To make the City Guides more engaging we are asking for your input on which designs should comprise our weekly list of 12. In order for this to work we will need you, our readers, to suggest a few of your favorite modern/contemporary buildings for the upcoming city guide in the comment section below. Along with your suggestions we ask that you provide a link to an image you took of the building that we can use, the address of the building, and the architect. (The image must be from a site that has a Creative Common License cache like Flickr or Wikimedia. We cannot use images that are copyrighted unless they are yours and you give us permission.) From that we will select the top 12 most recommended buildings. Hopefully this method will help bring to our attention smaller well done projects that only locals truly know. With that in mind we do not showcase private single-family residences for obvious reasons. Additionally, we try to only show completed projects.
This week we are headed to Beijing.
Example of the information we need for your suggestion:
Birds Nest National Stadium / Herzog & de Mueron
Olympic Green, Beijing, China
This year the Architects In Mission (AIM) competition committee is hosting its annual competition for architecture students and young professionals to demonstrate their design skills and abilities. The topic this year is “Post-Industry Age, Green Transformation” where participants will be asked to redesign a Beijing steel factory, the biggest in China.
The site is a part of the Central Business District of China and is heavily influenced by the rapid urbanization. Green Transformation aims to make use of the land resource, spatial quality and other conditions of the old industrial zones, and transform the previous heavy industrial production to new industries with low-pollution and low-energy consumption. It is geared toward the rehabilitation of brownfields, and creating diverse cultural spaces within the developing cities.
For more information on the competition visit AIM’s website
“You’re not going to find any of Ai Weiwei’s work being shown in Beijing”, said each Beijing gallery representative. That’s because the artist and agent provocateur has been detained for 80 days now was released today, from what the government is saying was based on “economic charges”. The name “Ai Weiwei” has joined a long list of sensitive words in this country, and associating yourself with the artist has become tantamount to asking for trouble. Just ask the Chinese curator who was questioned by authorities after putting Ai Weiwei’s name under a blank wall in Beijing’s Incident Art Festival.
While Beijing’s lively art scene might currently be scrubbed clean of Ai Weiwei’s work, there’s one thing that’s a little difficult to “harmonize” away, as it’s known here. In 1999, Ai Weiwei began moving into the world of architecture, establishing his own architecture studio called FAKE design four years later. So Ai Weiwei’s artistic vision continues to stand in the form of buildings across the nation’s capital. The most concentrated of these is the artist district of Caochangdi, a few kilometres north of the more commercial art district called 798. It’s also the location of the artist’s studio and where he headed straight to after his release.
More after the break.
The Wangfujing Center in Beijing, China is a mixed-use space designed by Latitude Studio. The intention of the proposal is to design an architectural solution that provides a container for an endless possibility of experiences. To achieve this, Latitude Studio considered the role of the atrium in Roman architecture, which injects the space with light and air.
Read on for more on this project after the break.
The Beijing Central Business District (CBD) plan by SOM can now add 2011 AIA Institute Honor Award for Regional and Urban Design to its list. The ongoing 4,200,000 sqm project is the winning design from the international design competition expanding the Beijing CBD
The plan calls for the establishment of three new districts anchored by signature parks and green boulevards. New modes of public transportation are proposed, including express commuter rail service between the Beijing Capital International Airport, the CBD, and high speed rail service at Beijing South Station. A new streetcar system is proposed to conveniently link all areas of the CBD, and every street would be bicycle friendly. To establish a pedestrian-friendly scale for development, the plan calls for a network of small, walkable blocks.
The Sino-Danish Centre for Education and Research (SDC), designed by Henning Larsen Architects in Copenhagen, is devoted to Chinese-Danish collaboration. Otherwise known as the Swan Building, the new SDC reflects a vision to develop Danish presence in China. The Swan Building is a distinct landmark with a unique Danish identity on the new GUCAS campus as it combines Denmark’s national bird and self-perception and the Chinese perception of the swan as a symbol of ambition.
Read on for more after the break.
Currently under development, OKRA’s Xiang’he Garden City, consisting of a masterplan for the Park of the Floating Gardens, defines challenging ambitions, turning the former clay pits into a water park. A new garden city of approximately 700 hectares will arise close to the future 7th ring of Beijing, China. The ambitions for the park are high and should create the perfect setting for the first housing development. The park should be a place for recreation, for running, for barbequing, for celebrations and more. It should also contribute to a sustainable environment, combining green design and water. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Another first prize for KSP Jürgen Engel Architekten in Beijing: Inno Olympic Plaza. The German studio won another competition in Beijing (after the recent first prize for the Beijing Science Center) and will build the Inno Olympic Plaza just south of the location of the 2008 Olympics. Additional images and a narrative of their winning proposal after the break.
Architects: gmp architekten
Location: Beijing, China
Design team: Gregor Hoheisel, Katrin Kanus, Ralf Sieber, Du Peng, Chun-song Dong
Project leaders: Matthias Wiegelmann mit Patrick Pfleiderer
Outline design: Meinhard von Gerkan and Stephan Schütz with Stephan Rewolle and Doris Schäffler
Revised design: Meinhard von Gerkan and Stephan Schütz with Stephan Rewolle
Project team: Bao Wei, Johanna Enzinger, Anna Bulanda, Kong Jing, An-dreas Goetze, Guo Fuhui, Mulyanto, Chen Yue, Zheng Xin, Gao Hua, Xing Jiuzhou, Helga Reimund, Tobias Keyl, Christian Dorndorf, Anette Loeber, Ve-rena Fischbach, Jiang LinLin, Liu Yan, Mehrafarin Ruzbehi, Yoko Uraji, Lu Han, Xia Lin, Tian Jinghai, Uli Bachmann, Ajda Guelbahar, Iris Belle, Sabine Stage
Client: The National Museum of China
Project area: 192,000 sqm
Project year: 2007 – 2010
Photographs: Christian Gahl, Ben McMillan, gmp
Architects: Atelier 11
Location: Beijing, China
Design Director: Xu Lei
Design Team: Ding Liqun, Gao Qinglei, Liu Heng, An Peng
Construction Drawing: Xu Lei, An Peng, Gao Qinglei, Ding Liqun, Li Lei, Liu Heng, Zhu Yin, Jin Ding
Client: Beijing Shi Ao Co., Ltd.
Project area: 51,199 sqm
Project year: 2009 – 2011
Photographs: Atelier 11
Located at a major crossroads along the Second Ring Road in Beijing’s eastern Dongcheng district, the CNOOC headquarters building acts as an urban counter-point to the massive Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building situated on the opposing corner.
Project description, images, and drawings after the break.
Architect: Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates
Location: Chaoyangmen North Street, Dongcheng, Beijing, China
Associate Architect: China Architecture Design & Research Group
Project Area: 940,000 sqf
Photographs: Zhang Guang Yuan and H.G. Esch