redeveloped by schmidt hammer lassen architects and located in beijing’s busy chaoyang district, the vanke times center has opened to the public bringing offices, retail and creative spaces to the city’s growing media district. comprising 47,000-square-meters, the mixed-use building blends the functional spaces with grand art installations, a multi-function exhibition space, and a bamboo meditation garden.

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
the ex-shopping mall comprises a total of 47,000 square meters
images by yuzhu zheng

 

 

completed by schmidt hammer lassen architects, the redevelopment consisted of transforming an ex-shopping mall into a light-filled, creative urban complex. the original building was composed of four levels on a rectangular plane with a central atrium. in order to bring more light into the building, the architects created a series of three atriums: two that increase the connection and natural light to the deep floor plan, and one carved from the street façade, creating the main entrance.

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
the mixed-use building blends the work and retail spaces with art installations and a bamboo meditation garden

 

 

located on the north side of the building, the 18-meter-high entrance atrium, known as the ‘creative living room’, opens to the city through a glass curtain wall. inside, a giant suspended sculpture installation by french photographer and artist charles petillon called ‘cloud storm’ endows the atrium with a whimsical overhead wonder while adding a theatrical quality to the space.

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
the bamboo garden is an oasis for office workers looking for a restful escape during the workday

 

 

on the west side of the second floor, visitors can find the most intimate atrium—the meditation bamboo garden. the space is an oasis for office workers looking for a restful escape during the workday. featuring vertical bamboo-like installations, the peaceful garden directs the gaze up towards the sun and sky, beyond the atrium’s skylight.

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
the three primary materials used were natural anodized aluminum, bamboo and glass

 

 

‘our design of the vanke times center redevelopment was influenced by the trend of businesses wanting a more dynamic, well-rounded office environment for their employees,’ comments chris hardie, partner at schmidt hammer lassen on the design. ‘in addition to opening up the atriums and bringing a scandinavian sensibility to the design, we pushed for the inclusion of artistic and creative spaces that both the public and tenants could enjoy.’

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
reflective surfaces define the building’s cool color palette and capture subtle light changes

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
site plan

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
north and east elevations
schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
south and west elevations

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
center section

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
center section

schmidt hammer lassen vanke times center charles petillon beijing designboom
sketch

 

 

project info:

 

client: beijing vanke co. ltd
architecture and interior design: schmidt hammer lassen architects
building area: 47,000 m2
competition: first prize – competition in 2016
status: completed august 2018
associate architect: beijing institute of residential building design and research co. ltd., beijing h concept architecture design company
landscape architect: z+t studio, shanghai
art facilitation: uap
façade consultant: inhabit
lighting design: han design associates
signage/wayfinding: 2×4
mep consultant: bon engineering consultants co., ltd
photography: yuzhu zheng

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