archi-union architects has highlighted the heavenly scene of the qiandao lake with a cable car station as part of the jinxianwan east resort development in china. the project called for an orthogonal planning on a mountain side with jagged steep terrain, with one side facing the clear waters of the lake and the other fronting the mountains. walking paths and greenery entwine these spaces together, interlocking to form an oscillating pattern along the mountainside. the site sits between the boat dock and the cable car station, having the project serve as an important transportation component and acting as a crucial part in the network of buildings throughout the area.

all images © su shengliang, lin bian



the design concept of archi-union’s qiandao lake cable car station takes form by abstracting the mountain’s figure through digital examination to study the geographical information. as a result, the site had a four-sided rectangular shaped area that would foreshadow the resulting appearance of the cable car station.

the layout of stacked volumes was envisioned by abstracting the form of the mountain



the design team took advantage of the cable car with its variety of spectacular views of the site and its surroundings. therefore, a system was elaborated to maximize the use of an aerial cantilevered structure and minimize the occurrence of structure on the ground. the four-sided figure that began during the design concept evolved into a new geometry closely related to the landscape and a structure challenging the standards of construction and cantilever constraints.

the project acts as a gate to the new center of the town responding to its surrounding



using time-based sorting, analytical models, selection methods and various stages of reduction, a mountain based landscape building emerged. what was once a collection of geometry fragments now merged into a cohesive whole, producing an object that was tucked into the fabric of the mountain itself without losing its autonomy. the process revealed a multivalent lively land-formed space that evolved using new independent geometry discovered at the site itself. from the summit down to the base, the building is an extension of the mountain, imbuing the whole structure with meaning, creating the building as an abstraction of nature itself.

the project strives for intimacy with the location and harmony between architecture and its environment



the design solution uses soaring forms, establishing the frame of the scene near a magnificent body of water. the architecture enclosure wraps spaces for exhibition, dining and commercial areas, as well as, other facilities in its inner courtyard. the hope is for the natural landscape forms of the architecture to impart formidable memories that will last long after leaving.

when tourists arrive by cable car they have only one vista to soak in

composite bamboo plywood integrates structure into surroundings

the design frames the heavenly scene of the qiandao lake

on the water’s edge there is a boat dock built with long planks of stone

the islands nestle together in the lake before the site


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