Morphosis Architects designed a new conference center for the city of Nanjing in China. Located in the New Jiangbei District, the project is situated between China’s eastern coastal cities and the Yangtze River Delta region. The conference center design was made as a flagship project to embody a charter for sustainable and ecologically-sensitive development.
As Morphosis explains, the building is located at a geographical and cultural junction in Nanjing, bordering the banks of the Yangtze River, the commercial edge of the Jianbei District, and the historic fabric of the Nanjing Metropolitan area. The center was designed to negotiate and respond to this condition through its form, landscape and circulation. The program includes a 375 room hotel in a single-loaded tower, as well as 36,000 sq. meters of conference spaces. In the podium, the spaces are organized by cladded box trusses which define a series of conference spaces flanking a central 200-meter arcade that bisects the building into a north and south wing. This arcade serves as the primary circulation spine for the building, intersected by short, perpendicular bridges providing access from VIP entrances and the hotel tower.
Blurring interiority and exteriority, the team's proposal draws back the metallic façade of the hotel tower into the building to form an atrium liner. As the team outlines, the city-facing side of the hotel tower use a fully-unitized aluminum frame that holds a series of frit glass panels that reflect the city context. On the river side, the landscape and façade mirror the organic nature of the river’s edge. A series of terraces negotiate the slope down from the building to the river piers, which are linked with the rhythm of the conference center’s structural bays by fluid paths and landscape elements. Above, the river-facing south façade features a metal and glass brise-soleil with over 90,000 distinct metallic panels. The brise-soleil is designed to reduce heat gain and contribute to the energy-efficiency of the building, which is designed to achieve a 3-Star rating, the highest sustainable design grade recognized by China’s national green building standard.
News via Morphosis Architects
Design Director: Thom Mayne
Project Principal: Eui-Sung Yi
Project Manager: Hann-Shiuh Chen
Project Architect: Carolyn Ng
Project Designers: Daniel Pruske, Karim Saleh and Christopher Wang
Project Team: Paul Choi, Stuart Franks, Farah Harake, Salvador Hidalgo, Janice Kim, Edmund Kwong, Yining Wang
Project Assistants: Tony Avila, Javier Benavides, Lauren Buntemeyer, Andres Conejero, Colleen Fellows, Fredy Gomez, Alessio Grancini, Eric Meyer, Anthony Mull, Danny Ortega, Francois Rucki, Kevin Sani and Yasmine Suleiman
Advanced Technology: Kerenza Harris, Kwang Wook Ryu, Stan Su and Atsushi Sugiuchi
Visualization: Jasmine Park and Ilko Iliev