Beside that it accommodates a branch of Zhejiang University and is used as eco-environmental education area with classrooms and offices. Last not least it provides meeting and catering areas for both tourists and students.
The new building – as entrance point passed by the majority of visitors – is aimed to be an outstanding landmark, a symbol for the ecological efforts connected with the wetland park, serving as an icon or logo for the whole area and showing its ecological progressiveness in a self-confident manner.
Beside the memorable triangular shape of the building, its vast glass roof covering the exhibition area – inclined in south-west direction for best serving the integrated photovoltaic panels – is the main mark of the architecture, from inside and outside.
Furthermore, the spacious green roof, freely passable for visitors from outside, serves as a space for tourists and students to walk, rest end enjoy views to the wetland park.
Whereas the roofscape is inspired by the silhouette of the distant mountains, the significant wooden sun protection elements of the facades connect the building directly to the ground, to its lush vegetation and big variety of trees. The density of the vertical wooden louvers depends on their orientation: south and west façades are more closed; the north façade is mostly opened.
Last not least, the energetic performance of the building will make it a milestone on the way to more energy-efficiency and sustainability. The project has been certified with the highest LEED label (‘platinum’). Moreover, it is intended that this building achieves zero emission of carbon dioxide as well as zero energy consumption – or even energy production instead of consumption.
Program spaces on the first 6 floors are: a subterranean parking garage, retail, cinemas, and restaurants. The floors 7-64 are mainly office areas provided for the various companies, separated by green atrium spaces programmed for restaurants, relaxation, conference facilities, etc. A sky-garden with restaurants and shops on the rooftop will be open to the public.
The ecological concept combines: natural ventilation and cooling and passive heating through a double-skin façade and sky gardens, ground cooling and stack ventilation, sun tracking photo voltaic panels embedded within the outer building envelope, electro-chromic glass for sun shading.
The LED multi media façade within the inner office envelope will be the social interface with the public and is intended to show live chats, videos, images, adverts and news.
A mix of human scale and green technology forms the corporate image and the chance to give the company a thriving, prosperous impetus. The headquarter tow¬er emerges vertically as image and landmark of the whole plot. It resembles a jet turbine: generated by a radial plan, narrower at the base, widening on the floors above before tapering to its top, giving a distinctive outline on the masterplan.
The building is curved vertically and horizontally. Without sharp edges it is hard to catch the real scale of the building, giving it a sense of lightness compared with the surrounding high-rises. The tower appears more slender than a rectangular block of equivalent size. Moreover, the aerodynamic form – like wings of an airplane – is minimizing wind loads on the structure and cladding. The shape allows much of the area to be landscaped, providing a valuable outdoor area in the heart of the masterplan. The base of the building is a circle, surrounded by a sunken plaza.
The distinctive tower has been designed as a ‘green building’ that resolves walls and roof in a continuous skin. A fully glazed double-façade – highly insulated and with integrated sun-protection – is opening up the building to light and views. Atriums between the radiating fingers of each floor are linked vertically in a spiral. In this way a series of informal spaces – as refreshment points or meeting areas equipped with cascading greenery as winter gardens – are created inside the building.
The tower is naturally ventilated, as fresh and filtered air is drawn up through the double-façade and the spiraling light wells (functioning as the building’s “lungs”), reducing the need for air-conditioning and central heating. Light wells and building shape maximize the amount of natural light throughout.
The exterior cladding is made of glass panels of various transparencies. The office areas are equipped with a double skin with central ventilated cavity containing solar-control blinds.
Last not least, the tower generates a strong night-time image thanks to its ‘vibrating’ façade.