With Shenzhen’s Bao’an District an emerging incubator for entrepreneurs and rapidly growing new businesses, FCHA’s second prize winning proposal for the Headquarters Building for Small and Medium Enterprises seeks to establish an inclusive hub for start-up enterprises. This building hopes to maximize the exchange of resources and ideas with the aim of sparking new innovation and collaboration. More images and architects’ description after the break.
To date, there are more than 20 stock-exchange listed companies with operations in the district. The competition is to pool collective wisdom and result in two building that shall be cohesive with different characteristics. The project is located in the west of the central green land of the seashore are in Shenzhen Bao’an CBD. The competition is supported by local government and composes of 2 buildings with a GFA of 71,030m2 with an investment of RMB1,7 billion.
Conventional office buildings often place a heavy emphasis on ‘efficiency.’ While this is certainly an important attribute for any work space, the approach taken to achieve it frequently comes at the expense of flexible and inclusive space. This condition is typically manifested in the single-use nature of most office buildings, the tight division of office suites, and isolation from urban surroundings
The conventional office is also coming under pressure from new perceptions and expectations on the part of businesses themselves, particularity creative start-ups. There is increasing demand for flexible office space that allows for the free and open exchange of ideas while pooling resources like conference rooms and even secretarial workers to maximize efficiency and reduce overhead costs.
In response to these issues, our proposal investigates the rationale behind the basic organization of office space and seeks to understand the office tower as a dynamic urban system in itself. The new headquarters building is surrounded by a landscaped plaza to the east, office towers to the north and west, and Qianhai Bay to the south. Two towers rise from a multi-layered podium that is broken down by variations in plan and section in order to emphasize human-scale and approachability from the street.
Inside the towers, column-free office suites offer tenants the flexibility to implement highly-customized division of space as part of a system of variable-term leases. At every level of the building, the external envelope is punctuated by voids for multi-story terraces that allow for open-air interaction among colleagues as well as people from neighboring offices.
The cores of the towers are left partially exposed so that natural light and ventilation may penetrate all areas of the structure. This continuous void is occupied at varied levels by common resources like conference rooms and printing/copying services that serve all of the surrounding offices.
A key aspect of the design intended to promote collaboration and exchange is the diagrammatic grouping of businesses by industry, such as communications technology or agri-business. This insures that industry-relevant discussion can occur alongside a broader flow of ideas that will take place in the larger communal spaces in the towers’ podium and roof-top garden.