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Bjarke Ingels Group creates innovative envelope for new towers in Shenzhen, China


The 96,000 m2 office development for the state-owned Shenzhen Energy Company is designed to look and feel at home in the cultural and business center of Shenzhen while standing out as a new social and sustainable landmark at the main axis of the city.

BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group won the international design competition in the city known as China’s ‘Silicon Valley’ with ARUP and Transsolar in 2009 and started construction in 2012.
The development consists of two towers rising 220m to the north and 120m to the south, linked together at the feet by a 34m podium housing the main lobbies, a conference center, cafeteria and exhibition space. Together with the neighboring towers, the new towers form a continuously curved skyline marking the center of Shenzhen.



above and cover images by Chao Zhang

BIG developed an undulating building envelope which creates a rippled skin around both towers and breaks away from the traditional glass curtain wall.
By folding parts of the envelope that would reduce solar loads and glare, a façade with closed and open parts oscillate between transparency to one side and opacity to the other. The closed parts provide high-insulation while blocking direct sunlight and providing views out. As a result, the towers appear as a classic shape with an organic pattern from a distance and as an elegant pleated structure from close-up. The sinuous direction of the façade corresponds to the solar orientation: it maximizes north-facing opening for natural light and views while minimizing exposure on the sunny sides. This sustainable facade system reduces the overall energy consumption of the building without any moving parts or complicated technology.



Images by Chao Zhang

Client: Shenzhen Energy Company
Size: 96,000 m2
Location: Shenzhen, China
Collaborators: ARUP, Transsolar, Front

Partners-in-Charge: Bjarke Ingels, Andreas Klok Pedersen
Project Manager: Martin Voelkle
Project Leaders: Song He, Andre Schmidt

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BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group

BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group

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