This base is a high-end commercial complex with 6 high-rise towers containing offices, hotels and business apartments. Adjacent to the CBD district, it is also located between two central parks in Shenzhen. URBANUS' design task was to construct a 100,000 m2 loft of apartments and offices on top of a shopping center larger than 60,000 m2.
To release the enormous pressure from the vertical dimension of the high-rise tower, we take advantage of the large area of the LOFTs, creating two artificial mountain volumes, in response to the huge scale of the towers. At the same time, the design connects the project to the natural form of the surrounding Lianhua and Bijia Mountains. This design also encloses a quiet space, by connecting the 3-4 level high-density office LOFT through exquisite sidewalks, creating a small town with rich spatial variation. There are also some public spaces, such as the LOFT Theater and the Trading & Exhibition Center that gradually transform the "big" and "solid" periphery space to the "small" and "dynamic" inner region. The Loft Town has accommodated a shopping mall, business offices and apartments, creating a new model of settlement which integrates residence, offices, shopping malls and cultural spaces.
The standard floor height of the apartment loft in A District is 9 meters, which can be flexibly divided and used; verandas are set on the north and south sides, which endows the room with good ventilation and sun protection. Every household has a private courtyard, where neighbors can interact and socialize, while having their own private space. For the facade, we use a greyish twisted grid in order to maximize the performance of the material.
In B District, the hotel loft and office loft enclose an inner garden, where a black box theater is set to stimulate future cultural activities in this region. The facades are decorated with white ceramic plates with rough texture, giving people the feeling of getting back to nature.
In C District, there are over twenty office lofts with 3-4 stories, forming small "villages". These lofts were arranged by groups, each with a courtyard. The lanes inside have the width of 4-6m and between these groups are open spaces with streets of 8-15m in width. Overhead channels, terraces, courtyards, balconies and galleries are interspersed among them, forming various spatial structures.
The office platform and business platform are connected by vertical transports. Workers can stroll in the mall when they are downstairs, and go back upstairs to work very conveniently. In the north is a residential area, and in the south people can see exhibitions in D District. The LOFT Town in UpperHills, by using a new building model, creates for its residents a multi-dimensional lifestyle.
D District is another "mountain" across from District A, located on the south side of the base. As a part of the government, it was initially set as the headquarter office. The depth of the building volume varies from 26m to 56m. By creating holes throughout the building's facades, the inner courtyards were set in different areas. This design would greatly enrich the levels of indoor and outdoor space. In the inner part of the building, aisles connect different levels of spaces, including inner courtyards, lounges and outdoor overhead platforms, forming a rich spatial experience.
Founded in 1999, under the leadership of partners Xiaodu Liu, Yan Meng and Hui Wang, URBANUS is recognized as one of the most influential architecture practices in China. URBANUS developed it’s branches in Beijing, Shenzhen. Many works have become new landmarks of urban life. The projects have received prominent awards, exhibited and published worldwide. URBANUS is now exploring opportunities for international and multidisciplinary collaborations to conduct a series of research projects focused on the contemporary urban China phenomena, including creative city development, post-urban village development, typologies for hyper-density and others. The projects of URBANUS have drawn international attention due to the firm’s sensitivity to urban, historical, and social structures, its ability to integrate the potential resources in space and society, and its effectiveness in responding to the complexities of the urban environment.