The project is located at Xinqiao Town, Songjiang District, a suburb area in Shanghai. How to address the local culture and context and create new urban space became the main concern of this project. Songjiang, as the cradle of Shanghai’s history and culture, has been overdeveloped during recent years. This rapid and chaotic development raises the problem of cultural vacuum. Many public spaces are seldom used and the green parks are lack of social activities. We try to reorganize the space through integrating the systems of pedestrian and green lands. A compact street layout realized close relationship with neighborhood. Meanwhile, green areas weave into the base of the site and build up a corresponding relationship with the existing river，resulting in an integrated space of water, green and architecture. The landscape system, which is an important element of this project, is considered as an infrastructure system of the whole project. It connects traffic, views and service facilities in the campus, brings unique value to individual building, and realizes the traditional Chinese scenery of garden, lake and laneway.
The high density and FAR value of the site are the two main problems we need to resolve in this project. We try to create a multilayer high-density hybrid art campus through architectural design. The program of the campus was blurry at start of the development. We proposed an integrated community with programs such as office, art studios and social art areas to the client. On one hand, through the prototype design, we explore the possibility of flexible spatial combination within the basic column grids. The resulting combined space is built upon a simple module. On the other hand, the commercial programs along the street provide service, collection and trading function, promoting communications with the external world. Every building has its own characteristic. Different combination between landscape and semi outdoor spaces like balcony, terrace and courtyard, improves the artistic quality of each unit. As a result, the artists can always take what they need in the campus and the spaces are often flexible for different kinds of art events. Through the prototypical combination and spatial planning of a basic functional space, the design realizes the beneficial combination of the industry chain and provides potential opportunities for future development.
For the construction of the architectural unit, we focus on the application of digital design within a tight project budget. The rational geometric logic is expressed by a simple fabrication method to realize the contemporary value of traditional building material. Through careful design of architectural elements like beam, column and facade panel, the structure exposes itself showing the nature beauty of the building. The use of red shale brick, glass and the concrete reflect the tectonic relationship of different material, which bring overall harmony to the building. The traditional stretching and header brick laying method is reinterpreted by the non-linear logic of computational design. The simple positioning and numbering methods translated from digital design media are easy and economical for the robot and builders to apply. The twisted roof of the club house at the entrance of the campus proposes a powerful gesture to the public. The relationship between the twisted roof and sky varies via changes of observing location. The accurate laying of the titanium zinc panels is successfully achieved through the guidance of geometrical ruled surface.
Founded in 2003, Archi-Union Architects is a Shanghai-based architectural design firm with a Grade A design qualification certificate issued by Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development. Over the years Archi-Union adheres to the combination of traditional Chinese culture and digital construction technology, focuses on "parametric construction", "robot construction" and "green industrialization" and some other objectives, and practices the symbiotic relationship of nature, urban and architecture.
There are more than 70 designers in the office currently and it has finished large amount of projects in the past decade. Its business scope includes comprehensive design services such as architectural design, urban planning, landscape design and interior design.
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