It stands a test of time for a public building to comprehend its web of connections. Shizimen Central Business District envisioned by 10 DESIGN is a strategically developed complex located along the Zhuhai waterfront close to Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macau. Gordon and Miriam’s design team visioned the first phase weaving multifarious interactive ingredients over a wide range of functions and activity zones.
Zhuhai regarded as a place of great natural beauty, and China’s garden city brings values to this business centre. The visualization of a uniquely striking tower erected as a beacon reflects a strong tie in the region’s landscape. The architectural elements echo and emulate the sculpted shorelines of Zhuhai, alleviated by the mesmerizing waterfront setting.
The competition-winning entry of 10 DESIGN has been commissioned to advise on the future overall design development, comprising 640,000 sqm of accommodation. The first phases incorporated 362,000 sqm of convention, theatre, music hall, exhibition, and banquet facilities. Supported with retail, F+B, serviced apartments, 548 key Sheraton Hotel, and a 320m high tower of grade A office spaces together with a 250 key St Regis Hotel.
Gordon liked to say how convention and exhibition facilities, if adequately considered, can play a vital role in the economic development of a region. He explained that convention and exhibition centres facilitate communication and act as catalysts for trade and commerce regionally and globally.
As stated by the design team, three vital defining factors for commercial success are location, flexibility, and diversity. Catering for a wider audience, the convention and exhibition facility hold many events with a high degree of flexibility in planning. The facility contains theatre, music auditorium, large scale convention and exhibition halls and large scale banquet rooms.
An associated mixed-use development demands a complimentary mix to work as a standalone destination beyond convention and exhibition operation requirements. Therefore functions such as office, hospitality, serviced apartments, and retail have locked and loaded in the first phase. Combining public and civic functions, the facility should act as a genuinely public amenity and civic centre. This principle adhered throughout the design process with the conception of an activated plaza linking the district road into the plaza, started by retail, F+B, and garden spaces.
The idea of an urban ribbon knitting the public and civic fabric brought immense dialogues between the spaces. The ribbon houses F+B and retail also connect the main Nanwan Road to the waterfront. The ribbon encouraged as a screen and divider between public and semi-public functions at the same time framing vistas towards Macau. Several diverse, unique entry points wrap special civic functions to varying zones.
The ribbon forms a formal entrance by day and a vibrant arch by night. The ribbon defines a series of intimate gardens that are key circulation areas between zones and provides sunken daylight wells for car parks. The combination of hardscape and planting reflects sculptural forms of the Zhuhai coastline.
The Shizimen Central Business District provides a wide range of facilities in a distinctive coastal setting. 10 DESIGN has envisaged a compelling platform for businesses and communication in the picturesque landscape of Zhuhai.