A streamlined shape for a cultural center

Zaha Hadid Architects was the winner of the competition to design the new Jinghe New City Cultural and Art Center in China’s Shaanxi Province, north of Xi’an City. The project is located in the Jinghe Bay Academic Innovation, Science and Technology District. The main focus is on the unique, streamlined shape of the building, which should refer to the phenomenal landscape of the surrounding area.

With regard to the topography

The design of the Jinghe New City Center for Culture and Arts references the natural landscape of Shaanxi Province. The flowing geometry of the design reflects the meandering valleys carved over time by the Jinghe River as it flows through the mountains outside the city. Intertwined with the current urban plan of the city, the concept combines the new multimedia library north of Jinghe Avenue with the performing arts theatre, multipurpose halls, studios and exhibition halls south of the main street. All of these connections lead through elevated courtyards, gardens and paths that soar over the eight lanes below.

The project includes gently sloping ramps to provide access from the surrounding network of elevated walkways. This creates a connection between the commercial and residential areas and the parks and the river in the south. At the same time, this solution invites residents into the heart of the building and provides direct access to the planned metro station.

A cultural center of the twenty-first century

The terraces of the multimedia library overlook the entire atrium. The light-diffusing skylights visible from here provide different reading zones, both for individual users and for group students. The library combines print and virtual collections, pushing the boundaries of science and enriching knowledge exchange. The Beijing Sub-center Library, designed by the architectural firm Snøhetta, to be implemented in Beijing, is also a highly original project for the library building.

On the south side of the alley you will find a theater room for 450 people, which can be adapted to many events. Multifunctional halls, studios and galleries are arranged around the theater hall to share public spaces designed to increase accessibility and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Innovative solutions for environmental well-being

With new research institutes, Jinghe New City is developing into a science and technology center, all driven by environmental considerations. The team notes that the city will soon become the center of an industry based largely on research into new energy and material resources, space and artificial intelligence. With this in mind, the project was developed as a passive building that combines different types of energy-generating technologies on site.

The aim of the architects was to optimize the natural daylight and ventilation in the center by analyzing the sun’s rays and the correct layout of the site. Photovoltaic panels were used to generate electricity on site and to integrate a rainwater harvesting system. In the construction of the center, priority will be given to the use of local materials with a high content of recycled materials. The ultimate goal is to achieve a 3-star certification in China’s Green Building program.

Jinghe New City Culture & Art Center – Building Design Certificate

Location: Jinghe New City, Shaanxi Province, China

Architectural firm: Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA)

Chief Architect: Patrik Schumacher

Commercial Director: Charles Walker

Project manager: Satoshi Ohashi

Deputy Director: Yang Jingwen

Project Architect: Nan Jiang

Design Team: Sanxing Zhao, Lianyuan Ye, Shaofei Zhang, Qiyue Li, Shuchen Dong, Yuan Feng, Congyue Wang, Yuling Ma, Yanran Lu

Sustainable Development Team: Carlos Bausa Martinez, Bahaa Alnassrallah, Aditya Ambare

Visualizations: ATCHAIN

Source of photos: zaha-hadid.com

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