Excerpt: Cube is an architectural project designed by The Architectural Design & Research Institute of Zhejiang University Co., Ltd. in China. The design widely employs energy-saving techniques to create a good interior environment. The workspace of the tower draws inspiration from traditional Hui-style architecture that features an open-air courtyard enclosed by rooms on four sides.
[Text as submitted by architect] The project is one of the early built constructions in Hangzhou Xiaoshan Innovation Polis, which sits on the south bank of Qiantang River. It was built in the context that Xiaoshan Innovation Polis was identified asa key node for Hangzhou’s river-centered development strategy, Qianjiang Century City began to take shapeand theAirport Economic Demonstration Zone was just approved. The client urgently hoped to create an architectural landmark for Xiaoshan Innovation Polisand inject vitality into the wider new urban area, with high expectations for the theme, image and iconicity of the building. Meanwhile, as the Internet celebrity economy is rising, the main challenge for the projectwas how to create an iconic, lively and instagrammable building under the height limit.
To cater to the needs of young innovators, researchers and entrepreneursin Xiaoshan Innovation Polis, the design adopts the concept “Cube”, which signifies the infinite possibilities of entrepreneurship and scientific research and the vitality of youths. With staggered elegant cubic volumes andartificial lighting at night, thebuildingpresents a futuristic, instagrammable image throughout the day at the side of the Hangzhou-Ningbo Expressway, hence becoming aniconic landmarkthat representsXiaoshan Innovation Polis.
The facades of the tower take design cues from the “3×3 grid”, and draws on local traditional “lacework” handicrafts to formunique exterior patterns, which embody the inheritance of local culture. Besides, the design also focuses on the integrity of the fifth facade to form a unifiedbuilding image.
The spatial organization also takes”cube” as the motif. Main functions including scientific research, office, entrepreneurship and commercial services are well organized, thus achieving the unity of functionality and form. The commercial spaces of the podium consist of several “cubes”, and the gaps between those”cubes” turn into entrances and exits facing the urban roads.
The layout positively echoes with the traditionalspatial pattern of streets and alleys, and forms a straight internalcommercial circulation, making the commercial space organizationmore clear, efficient and coordinated. The staggered volumes of adjoining upper and lower podium volumes naturally form a series of rooftop terraces, open-air spacesandinner atriums, which greatly improve spatial experience, provide more expandedcommercial spaces and create a pleasant commercial atmosphere. The tower adopts a double-layer curtain wall system for playful facade image and great daylighting and ventilation. The curtain wall of the podium uses glass and colorful aluminum panels, and showsa strong futurist feeling and rhythm through the alteration of colors.
The design widely employs energy-saving techniques to create a good interior environment. The workspace of the tower draws inspiration from traditional Hui-style architecture that features an open-air courtyard enclosed by rooms on four sides, hence shaping a full-height atrium with aheight of 80m. Based on the reasonable depth, both workspaceand the core tube embrace good daylighting and ventilation. The operableglass skylight above the entrance foyer enhances the fluidity of air, thereby greatly improving the internal micro environment.
Since completion, the “Cube” has gained wide praisefor the excellent combination of theme and form, playfulness and practicality, nature and energysaving, and meanwhile received attention and hits onmany video media platforms such as Yangshipin.It will grow together with Xiaoshan Innovation Polis,and witness the glorious chapter of urban construction on the south bank of Qiantang River in the Asian Games era.