Recently, a service buildings group of Nantong Urban Agricultural Park has been completed by Z-ONE Architects (a newly emerging studio which specializes in experimental architectural practice in rural China; established in 2020). It located on the northern suburb of Nantong, Jiangsu, China, with a total construction area of 4552.8m². It took only four months to complete the whole process from design to landing.
Base on the work of Rural East planning team in the early stage ,Z-ONE studio got involved in "Gather Grain into Granary" Comprehensive Service Center， Rural Living Room Exhibition Center and the renovation of an existing public restroom. Considering that the project is located in the entrance area, which is an important place for visitors to perceive, of the whole park. It needs to consider the transition between urban and rural experience, but without missing the reflection and reconstruction of contemporary architectural vocabulary.
The main function building "Gather Grain into Granary" Comprehensive Service Center, a collection of five warehouse-shaped spaces, adopts steel-timber combined structure. It gathers a field library, an exhibition space, a studying space, a dining space and a multi-function hall for business activities.
The design team creates internal ‘wells of light’ in every core spaces by the intersection of structure. Each space provides different sunlight perception through different ways of light leading making visitors accept the power of nature in different layers.
During the design process, Z-ONE team reduced the dimensionality of free-form surface for many times, which greatly reduced the amount of special-shaped steel and wood structure and reduced the engineering difficulty. At the same time, combined with the on-site construction conditions, the problem of laying tiles in large quantities on the irregular curved roof was creatively solved.