A looping mixture of culture and commerce has won Joel Sanders Architect and FreelandBuck first prize in the international competition hosted by the largest media and publishing company in China, Phoenix Publishing and Media Group (PPMG).
Their 80,000 square meter winning proposal for the new Kunshan Phoenix Cultural Mall divides a large urban block into four 'cultural cores,' each five stories high and respectively housing a theater, fitness club, education center, and exhibition halls. The podium, which sits upon the glass-clad cores, spirals the length of the perimeter (comprised of stores, restaurants and cafes) and ultimately plateaus at an open park where the public and Phoenix employees would share a common space.
A 20-story office tower for PPMG rises from the cultural podium. Its louvered-facade, which provides solar-shading for its interior spaces, works in contrast to the transparent cores underneath it.
In the coming months, Kunshan will announce a timeframe of construction.