BDP has been appointed to deliver the urban regeneration masterplan for the former steelworks site in Chongqing, China.
An interdisciplinary design team, led by BDP, will deliver a landmark renewal of the urban space, based on modern planning concepts and contemporary design aspirations whilst promoting industrial regeneration and retention of important industrial heritage. The new steelworks site will become a benchmark for innovative food, beverage and hospitality industry in China and present a new tourist and leisure destination within a unique, mixed use offering for the local community.
Peter Marshall, Architect Director and BDP studio lead in Shanghai, explains: “Original industrial objects provide touchstones to the past and in this part of the world retaining the unique feel of structural language and strong forms of culture is so important.”
“Central to the project will be the preservation and adaptation of old structures creating a development with a hybrid mix of new and old buildings and a variety of uses. Keeping and restoring much of the industrial symbols and heritage associated with the Baowu Steel Group, this design will celebrate Chinese industry and architecture and provide a fantastic new commercial centre for Chongqing.”
A north entrance plaza will connect to Gong Bo Zhong Lu, framed by two new buildings - a hotel and a large office building, which will become the new Southwest headquarters for Baowu Group. A lattice of external and internal courtyards and alleyways link the whole site together, enhancing the pedestrian permeability and connecting new commercial uses into the existing museums and old industrial units.
The new hotel, comprising 150 rooms, will be built with the retention of existing structures and facades providing a calm, contemplative atmosphere and a strong sense of place for residents and visitors to the city. The new 40,000 sqm 20-storey office building will offer riverside views for all floors, with terraces that bring the dramatic external setting of the river and the rooftop steelworks, inside.
Peter Marshall continues: “This is an exemplar project demonstrating how upgrading regional urban space, providing new modern buildings and connecting fragments of ancient industrial sites can bring more commercial opportunities that regenerate a place and bring life to a community.”
The choice of materials continues the trend of reflecting the history of the site. Aluminium and glass are juxtaposed with traditional cladding materials such as brick tiles and COR-TEN weathering steel to represent the heritage of the factory spaces and the materials they once produced.
At the centre of the new steelworks will be a digitally-connected food and beverage offering, set within the fabric of the industrial structure. It will present a unique atmosphere for visitors, sheltered under the large span roof - which enables a balanced external microclimate for diners during the day and night.