Jingyuan Road Riverfront District

  • Client Huafa Properties (华发股份)
  • Expertise Adaptive Reuse, Mixed Use
  • Region Asia-Pacific
  • Location Jingan, Shanghai, China

Restoration and sensitive adaptation are central strategies for this riverfront development, which aims to preserve a heritage site while reinvigorating the neighborhood with new offices, retail, and cultural amenities.

Project Facts
  • Status Design In Progress
  • Completion Year 2024
  • Design Finish Year 2022
  • Size Site Area: 1.40 hectares Building Height: 40 meters Building Gross Area: 48,312 square meters
Project Facts
  • Status Design In Progress
  • Completion Year 2024
  • Design Finish Year 2022
  • Size Site Area: 1.40 hectares Building Height: 40 meters Building Gross Area: 48,312 square meters

Restoration and reinvention

Located in Shanghai’s Jing’an district, this waterfront site includes industrial infrastructure that once served a crucial shipping route along the Suzhou River.  In the 1930s, the site was a major battleground in the Second Sino-Japanese War. The Sihang Warehouse, a building damaged during the war, has been preserved as a memorial and is a significant tourist destination. The redevelopment of the adjacent south parcel, along the waterfront, aims to reinvigorate the area through restoration and thoughtful addition.

© SOM

The curved site facing the river and adjacent to the Sihang Warehouse will feature a mixed-use complex that adds office, cultural programming, and high-end retail to the district. The development includes several low-rise buildings, two 5-story office buildings, an 8-story office and cultural center, and the restoration of two historical residential buildings, which will contain boutique office space designed to complement traditional Shanghainese architecture.

Traditional and contemporary materials

Drawing inspiration from the district’s industrial past, new and restored buildings will be crafted with durable, locally sourced materials that balance contextual authenticity with contemporary, environmentally-conscious design. Materials such as concrete, glass block, and red and gray terracotta bricks are paired with elegant bronze metal detailing. 

The two new mid-rise buildings feature masonry screen walls, in which openings between the bricks allow for natural ventilation. Glass blocks are used to filter daylight into the building.

© SOM

The reconstructed, three-story boutique office is a modern interpretation of Shanghainese architecture. Its primary facade features two protruding bays with abstracted elements, including concrete cornices and curved stepping gables. Following the spatial traditions of Shikumen Lilong, or stone gate housing, a large beveled entrance leads to an exterior entry courtyard before reaching skylit interiors supported by traditional timber rafters.

© SOM

Strategies for sustainable development

The development employs design strategies to reduce operational energy, including a low window-to-wall ratio, facade shading, natural ventilation, and rainwater collection. A hybrid concrete and timber structure supports a building enclosure made of terracotta brick and glass block, materials chosen to reduce the overall carbon footprint of the development.

In addition, large parks, plazas, terraces, and green roofs improve occupant wellness by providing access to nature while restoring green space along the Suzhou River.

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