Crossboundaries' contemporary studio office is transformed from a 1950s auditorium.
With the spread of rapid, raze-and-rebuild development in contemporary China, older buildings are becoming increasingly rare - especially in trendy areas like Sanlitun in Beijing. Crossboundaries uses a plug-in approach to bring four new office spaces into the former auditorium, and create a new relationship with the existing building and its history.
Four offices for independent lease are centered around the double-height, lofty atrium, ideal for co-working and events. A new roof with evenly scattered skylights is raised above the original roof line, making room for a mezzanine levels above each office and bringing ample natural daylight into the space.
The mezzanine level is freestanding and stepped back from the original outer walls, forming voids for circulation, air and filtered natural light. The concrete walls are left bare to reveal and celebrate their history, juxtaposing old and new.
Crossboundaries occupies the office at the end of the atrium. Upon arrival, the principal floor is a large, open space that functions for meetings, reception, and community events, with the mezzanine level operating as the primary workspace. A service area at the back of the office is anchored to the existing auditorium wall, serving as a kitchen, storage, and small meeting room on the ground floor - and a material and reference library on the mezzanine level.
The Sanlitun loft utilizes the existing building to stimulate creativity and foster a beautiful, temporal relationship between its residents and their environment.