the nanjing international youth cultural centre, a project completed by zaha hadid architects in 2015, has been documented in new images by photographers hufton + crow. located in the capital of china’s eastern jiangsu province, the scheme comprises two tapering towers, which, at 255 and 315 meters (837/1033ft), are the firm’s tallest buildings to date. impressively, the entire development was completed 34 months after design began with all works on site lasting just 18 months.

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre
all images © hufton + crow

 

 

the zaha hadid-designed development initially provided accommodation for the 2014 youth olympic games and is now in its legacy stage. the complex includes the new jumeirah nanjing hotel, a cultural centre with conference facilities, an urban plaza, offices, and mixed-use areas. the cultural centre’s design is a three dimensional calligraphic composition that resonates with nanjing’s 1,600-year-old tradition of yunjin — the name given to the intricate brocade threading used by local craftsmen to weave the region’s acclaimed gold and silver fabrics.

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

 

 

surrounding a central courtyard, the four elements of the cultural centre (conference hall, auditorium, shops, and guest zones) are independent volumes that merge into a singular whole at higher levels. this enables pedestrians to walk through an open landscape at ground level. the conference hall seats 2,100 and is equipped with a multi-purpose proscenium stage suitable for conferences, cultural, and theatrical events. meanwhile, the 500-seat auditorium is optimized for acoustic performances.

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

 

 

the trapezoidal floor plans of the two towers maximize their river-facing frontages, while double-decked elevators increase the efficiency of their core area planning by 50%. from an environmental perspective, natural light is channeled into the deep plan spaces of the conference centre — minimizing the need to augment daylight by avoiding tinted glass. elsewhere, offices combine mechanical and natural ventilation which, along with high level gardens, have been implemented to enhance the overall user experience.

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

zaha hadid nanjing international youth cultural centre

 

 

project info:

 

project data —
tower 1: 255 m
tower 2: 315 m
conference hall: seats 2,100
auditorium: seats 500
2 hotels: 136,000 sqm
conference centre: 106,500 sqm
offices: 122,500 sqm
basement: 100,000 sqm

 

project team —
architects: zaha hadid architects (ZHA)
design: zaha hadid, patrik schumacher
ZHA project director: nils-peter fischer
ZHA consulting associate: cristiano ceccato
ZHA project architect: shao-wei huang
ZHA lead facades and envelope: shao-wei huang, lydia kim
ZHA lead conference centre: melike altinisik
ZHA lead towers and podium: garin o’aivazian
ZHA lead interiors: may-jinqui qin
ZHA lead landscape and urbanism: carolina lopez-blanco
ZHA lead site supervision: ed gaskin
ZHA competition team: garin o’aivazian, jalal el-ali, kyla farrell, maria tsironi, matthew richardson, melike altinisik, meng chan tang, mirco becker, mostafa el sayed, paolo gamba, saman saffarian, shajay bhooshan, shao-wei huang, shyamala duraisingam, spyridon kaprinis, suryansh chandra, yevgeniya pozigun
ZHA project team: alexandros kallegias, ashwin shah, carlos michel-medina, carlos piles puig, chao wei, charbel chagoury, christy yin, david doody, duarte reino, elena scripelliti, emma chen, ermis chalvatzis, eugene leung, frenji koshy, george frenji, ho-ping hsia, hongdi li, igor pantic, jamie mann, john randle, julia mcleod, katharina hieger, konstantinos mouratidis, leonid krykhtin, leo wu, mattia gambardella, michael grau, michael sims, mostafa el sayed, mu ren, nassim eshaghi, natassa lianou, nicholette chan, niqui berkowski, patryk ruszkowski, sebastian andia, shajay bhooshan, soomeen hahm, spyridon kaprinis, vincent nowak, yuchen zhang, yue shi, yun zhang
ZHA site supervision team: juan liu, david chen, liyuan zhang, vincenzo cocomero, xi wang, xin ji, yan geng

 

architect of record: china architecture design and research group
structural engineer: burohappold engineering, china architecture design and research group
MEP engineer: burohappold engineering, china architecture design and research group
vertical transportation consultant: dunbar and boardman
façade engineer: burohappold engineering
landscape architect: SWA group
lighting consultant: brandston partnership ltd
acoustics consultant: zhejiang university, china
theatre consultant: china art and technology institute
main contractor: china state construction engineering corporation division 8, china state construction engineering corporation division 3

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