Ascentage Pharma campus: chemistry inspires architecture
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Ascentage Pharma campus: chemistry inspires architecture

A modern, innovative complex that symbolizes the company’s mission and commitment to progress

OLI Architecture

Ascentage Pharma campus: chemistry inspires architecture
By Redazione The Plan -

Ascentage Pharma is a multinational pharmaceutical company with a commitment to research and innovation in pharmacology and biotechnology. The firm recently developed anti-cancer drugs that represent a huge step forward in the field. Designed by OLI Architecture, its new, cutting-edge headquarters in Suzhou reflect its mission and culture, with its design and construction the product of the most innovative technologies currently available. Rather than just a corporate headquarters, the development is more of a business campus made up of seven buildings with total floorspace of 1.58 million sq.ft. (147,000 m2). The buildings are joined by a black granite pool, which reflects the volumes and multiplies the visual impact of the architecture.


The development of the façade concept

Ascentage Pharma Campus, OLI Architecture ©Zhonghai Shen, courtesy of OLI Architecture

The development has simple, clean lines and soft, light, and rounded volumes that seem to float above the water. Although different in form and finish, they share the same design concept and captivating shapes, which catch the eye of passers-by on nearby Xinqing Road.

The R&D department is housed in the most iconic building of the complex: a fully glazed 260 ft. (80 m) high volume enclosed in a geometric mesh modeled on the molecular structure of benzene. This organic molecule has six hydrogen and six carbon atoms arranged in a hexagon. The geometry of the structural formula was used as a basic concept for the design of the façades of all seven buildings, varied according to their different parameters and created with different materials – some more solid, some lighter – to form an organic complex in which each element is in dialogue with the rest.

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Parametric design and BIM

Ascentage Pharma Campus, OLI Architecture ©Zhonghai Shen, courtesy of OLI Architecture

OLI Architecture used the most advanced design methods for this project. The hexagonal shape of benzene’s structural formula was developed according to parametric calculation criteria. This produced different configurations and shapes, which were then applied to the façades. Using building information modeling, the shapes were modeled and manufactured digitally using high-strength concrete panels and anodized aluminum framing.

This eye-catching cutting-edge architecture is set to become a symbol of the company and carry Ascentage Pharma into the future.



Location: Suzhou, China
Architects: OLI Architecture
Completion: 2023
Client: Ascentage Pharma
Build-up Area: 146,842 m2

Photography by Zhonghai Shen, courtesy of OLI Architecture

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