Shenzhen is a thriving metropolis, with three-quarters of its 12.5 million population from other regions of China. Much of the influx is concentrated in Shenzhen Bay, which is planned as a new CBD to attract the establishment of offices and headquarters from Chinese and international corporations. With newcomers from other Chinese provinces, Shenzhen Bay realized the need for unifying its populace with a common identity, one method of which is to gradually change its skyline from typical western to inspired eastern. A forerunner in this change is the major state-owned developer China Resources, which designed its 400m headquarters tower to resemble a narrow-topped Spring Bamboo, a renowned and traditional synonym for life and vitality.
A new landmark in Shenzhen
Engaged by China Resources Group in 2011, WSP took on the endeavour of conforming the international-scaled building to stringent local regulations as the Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing (MEP) and vertical transportation system (VTS) consultant. Providing services for the client in design, tendering support, and construction supervision, WSP split the conforming challenge into 2 components.
Firstly, the city’s stringent ordinances prevented the positioning of excess plant equipment on the already narrow top of the building. WSP relocated multiple space-efficient plant facilities to the lower floors and positioned the smoke extraction system on the roof as required by local regulations.
Lastly, given the bulging conical Spring Bamboo form, the architect Kohn Pederson Fox (KPF) Associates adopted column-free circular floorplates, which imposed the use of 56 external steel columns and an internal reinforced concrete core. While straightforward in design, this required numerous structural beams to connect the steel columns with the concrete core, limiting the size of the core wall openings. WSP coordinated extensively with the structural engineer to allow for smooth passage of MEP services through these wall openings and for 60 lifts to travel within the core to the different floors. Some shuttle lifts sail through the upper floors at 33 km/h.
Under construction since 2014 and scheduled for completion in 2018, the 400-meter, 67-floor China Resources Headquarters Tower accumulate to a gross floor area of 268,713 sq.m, occupying more than a third of the 760,000 sq.m overall project, which includes a hotel and massive shopping center. The 345 metre-high top floor houses a Sky Hall with an interior view of the building spire and a panoramic view of the surrounding Shenzhenwan Port and Shenzhen University. With its unique building form, active city center location, and underground links to public transportation, the China Resources Headquarters Tower is poised to be a striking landmark of Shenzhen.