Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG) has announced the design of the new South HeXi Yuzui Financial District in Nanjing.
The firm won an international design competition in 2018 to design the new South HeXi Yuzui Financial District and Tower and can now release the final scheme for the 860,000-square-meter-development. The scheme includes a new 500-meter-tall tower that will anchor the district and enhance Nanjing’s already iconic skyline. The tower will be one of the tallest in Nanjing and features a magnificent 360-degree, open-air observatory at the top, which would make it of the highest in the world. It will also be one of the tallest buildings to achieve LEED Gold certification when completed in 2025.
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“We are thrilled to announce that the project is moving forward with Jinmao Group,” says AS+GG Design Partner Adrian Smith, FAIA. “South HeXi Yuzui will be the foundation of a new world-class waterfront business district. This new global destination will be a vibrant live-work community that will be at the center of culture, nature, entertainment, and technology. The tower’s concept draws its inspiration from the patterns contained in the flowing waters of the nearby Yangtze River and expresses the beauty and fluidity of today’s lifestyles and culture in China.”
The mixed-use development will increase the value of the location with networks to access the riverfront, multiple public transportation options, and many new cultural, natural, and technological opportunities. Encouraging increased interaction, the user is invited to experience the district, as either a live-work environment, or as a visitor to one of the many public parks and art centers.
In addition to the 500-meter tower, the district’s master plan includes four other office towers and a residential tower, across a range of heights.
“It was important for the success of the district to include a supertall tower. The building will be an important focal point and add value to the surrounding development sites,” says Smith, further remarking, “these iconic supertall structures draw business, tourism, and retail activity from all over China and the international tourist market.”
At the heart of the new Central Business District, the architectural design of the new supertall was inspired by the Yangtze River. The river reflects light, throwing out textures and dimensions, much like the tower’s exterior, which is shaped to mitigate wind vortices, optimize views, and enhance both the structure and the program. Its mixed-use office program also features a unique observatory amenity with a stunning viewing platform.
“For supertall buildings to remain at the forefront of cultural advances, the concept of carving out ‘special’ event or gathering spaces toward the top of the tower has become a distinct differentiation,” says Gordon Gill, FAIA, AS+GG Design Partner. “Building tall is no longer a challenge but instead, an expectation. Today, height is no longer the sole factor that makes a building unique, attractive, or interesting.”
The LEED Gold design incorporates multiple green spaces that enhance the tower and the surrounding development, allowing users to experience the tactile sensations of the landscaping elements that are shown to promote a sense of well-being, and improve air quality and local microclimates.
“The sustainable design of the tower was shaped through a variety of studies and models,” says Robert Forest, FAIA, AS+GG Management Partner. “Performance is the catalyst for the design of the form, expression, and functionality of the buildings. The towers are designed and positioned to take advantage of the winds, the sun, and even the rain in Nanjing.”
The tower will integrate rainwater harvesting into the sky gardens that target onsite water management at greater than 100 percent of rainfall. Rainwater will be collected using “sponge city” concepts, including sub-soil collection, permeable paving, and recessed green space. Collected water will be drained to tanks below ground level, where it will be treated and stored for reuse. A 55 percent reduction in total indoor water use is predicted.
The tower seeks an overall energy reduction through a combination of energy strategies, such as reducing the cooling load, installation of a high-performance façade, reducing heating loads, reducing lighting loads, and reducing plug loads. A high-performance, Low-E insulated curtain-wall system has carefully designed fins that work with the building’s geometry to efficiently reduce solar heat gain and provide the effective protection to the indoor environment, while maintaining access to daylighting and controlling glare.
For more on this story, go to Architect Magazine.