The Start-Up exhibition and conference center, the first building within Chengdu's Unicorn Island project, is nearing completion. Conceived by Zaha Hadid Architects, the 67-hectare mixed-use master plan will generate living and working environments for Chinese and international companies.
In line with China’s evolving economy and continuous growth towards internet and technology-based organizations, the project creates a “unicorn island” or a hub for the development of start-ups. Located in the Tianfu New Area, south of Chengdu, an ecologically sustainable civic, business and residential center for China’s technology and research sectors, Unicorn Island will be home for 70,000 researchers, office staff, residents and visitors. In fact, the project “has been designed to enhance the wellbeing of its community; […] influenced by principles within the region’s historical natural engineering projects”.
On another hand, following the “environmental principles of Dujiangyan’s historic irrigation system and Tianfu New Area’s ongoing work to re-establish its natural wetlands”, the master plan’s guidelines define particular concepts that improve the efficiency of the structures and the wellbeing of its inhabitants. Actually, “Unicorn Island’s parkland design incorporates green civic spaces, water conservation, and enhanced connectivity to create its living and working environments”.
With a radial master plan, the design, conceived within a walkable and “bikeable” distance, allows instant access to the entire space. The central plaza and metro station are surrounded by “integrated clusters of buildings”, with heights and compositions that vary according to functions, program, etc. In fact, through organic growth, the structures will create a diverse community. Natural water management systems and innovations in urban farming technologies will be also incorporated in Unicorn Island.
- Architect: Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA)
- Design: Patrik Schumacher
- ZHA Project Directors: Satoshi Ohashi, Michele Pasca di Magliano
- ZHA Project Associates: Andres Arias Madrid, Stefano Paiocchi, Jingwen Yang
- ZHA Project Architect: Maria Tsironi
- ZHA Project Team: Di Ding, Chengzhen Jia, Johannes Elias, Konstantina Tsagkaratou, Martin Gsandtner, Millie Anderson, Nicolas Tornero, Shahd Abdelmoneim, Sven Torres, Thomas Bagnoli, Valentina Cerrone, Yihui Wu, Yuan Zhai, Martina Rosati, Arian Hakimi Nejad, Kate Revyakina, Vincent Konate, Neil Rigden, Juan Montiel, Christos Koukis, Jihan Shraibati, Patricia De Osma Arena, Shi Qi Tu, Irfan Bhakrani, Qiuru Pu
- ZHA Competition Project Directors: Satoshi Ohashi, Michele Pasca di Magliano
- ZHA Competition Project Designer: Maria Tsironi
- ZHA Competition Project Associate: Jingwen Yang
- ZHA Competition Team: Chafik Zerrouki, Di Ding, Konstantina Tsagkaratou, Lida Zhang, Lorena Espaillat Bencosme, Millie Anderson, Nailu Chen, Nicolas Tornero, Philipp Siedler, Sven Torres, Xinqi Zhuang, Yihui Wu, Yuan Feng
- Competition Engineering (Transport, SMART and Civil): Ramboll
- Landscape Design: Ramboll Dreisetl