World-renowned architecture firm Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) has just won a competition for the second phase of Beijing’s International Exhibition Centre. The competition was launched to help meet expected growth for the bustling business center— which the designers met with their futuristic new complex.
The winning design features a symmetrical complex split down the middle and connected by sinuous bridges. The texture applied to these continuous forms is inspired by the tiles of Chinese architecture and is used here on a much larger scale. The main design move of splitting the building apart creates a beautiful public space below with plenty of access to natural light; bridges cross these green areas and are enclosed with floor-to-ceiling glass panels so that visitors can look at the park below.
Aside from the creation of a generous outdoor space, ZHA’s proposal also integrated a new business program needed to get Beijing’s International Exhibition Centre ready for the next generation of innovators. These include a hotel, conference centers, and plenty of exhibition halls, as well as less formal spaces like smaller informal meeting areas, cafés, and access to outdoor areas.
Like many of the firm's other futuristic projects, this proposal planned for a hybrid system that would eliminate the need for breaking up interior space with traditional columns. “The roof’s symmetric geometries create an efficient lightweight large span structure to provide a column-free flexible space that can quickly adapt to changes in exhibitions and nature of use; its industrial materiality and scale balanced with its fluid architectural language,” explains ZHA.
The architects also included green technologies in their design by proposing modern smart building technologies. AI will monitor the interior air conditions and adjust the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems to keep temperatures consistent without being wasteful. Meanwhile, solar energy and rainwater will be collected. Rain will even be recycled to help maintain all of the greenery included in the proposal.
If you want to see more incredible projects by ZHA, read our article about the Queen of the Curve and our favorite projects by the firm.