Today, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) released its design for the Hangzhou Wangchao Center, a new mixed-use tower in Hangzhou, China. Designed for Zhejiang Chengdao Properties Limited, the tower is slated for completion in 2021.
The city of Hangzhou, in eastern China, is undergoing considerable growth. As the host of the Asian Games in 2022, it is poised to become a new global destination. The Hangzhou Wangchao Center will serve as a gateway to the newly planned Qianjang Century Town in Hangzhou. It will add 125,000 square meters of office, hotel, and retail programming to the rapidly expanding region. The tower is directly adjacent to one of the city’s new subway stations, and is accessible from a major roadway.
The tower's expressive silhouette is the result of an integrated architectural and engineering solution. An efficient structural system minimizes wind loads with eight mega-columns that slope outward at the corners to create large, flexible floor plates. As the corner columns move further apart, secondary perimeter columns branch out to maintain equal column bays. Above the lobby, a Vierendeel transfer truss links the secondary columns to the corner columns, creating an open lobby space below. The undulating facade is highly rationalized, allowing the entire cladding to consist of planar glass panels.
“The Hangzhou Wangchao Center’s distinctive silhouette derives its form from an integrated design process that solves programmatic, structural, and environmental criteria. Located at the intersection of several major transportation networks, the tower is a beacon of performance-driven design and is emblematic of Hangzhou’s future as a new global destination,” stated SOM Design Partner Gary Haney.
Balancing a striking architectural vision and structural clarity, the Hangzhou Wangchao Center will set the precedent for mixed-use development in the region.
About Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) is one of the leading architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world. Since its founding more than 80 years ago, SOM has earned a reputation for design excellence with a portfolio that includes some of the most important architectural accomplishments of the 20th and 21st centuries, and has been a leader in the research and development of specialized technologies, new processes and innovative ideas, many of which have had a palpable and lasting impact on the design profession and the physical environment. The firm’s longstanding leadership in design and building technology has been honored with nearly 2,000 awards for quality, innovation, and management. The American Institute of Architects has recognized SOM twice with its highest honor, the Architecture Firm Award—in 1962 and again in 1996. The firm maintains offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Dubai, and Mumbai.