Our winning proposal for the Kunshan Phoenix Cultural Mall—an 80,000 sqm corporate headquarters and cultural complex to be built in Kunshan, one hour west of Shanghai—consists of a 20-story office tower perched upon a five-story podium organized around four 'cultural cores' that respectively house theaters, exhibition halls, a fitness club and an education center. A retail loop, comprised of affiliated stores, restaurants and cafes, spirals around each cultural core, allowing culture and commerce to mix.
The large urban site is divided into four pedestrian-scaled culture/commerce blocks that define the perimeter of a central outdoor atrium. The Book Mart dramatically crowns the entire complex and serves as a base for the office tower, visually and symbolically unifying all of the programmatic elements. The green roof of the Book Mart acts as a cultural park where the general public and Phoenix employees can come together. This park is accessible from within each of the four mini-malls, as well as from a grand escalator located in the outdoor central atrium. The pinnacle of each mini-mall intersects the Book Mart and pierces the green roof forming three pavilions—a kunsthalle, amphitheater, and spa—that enhance the cultural life of the Kunshan community. The tower is clad with a striking pattern of diagonal louvers that provide solar shading and mark the tower as a visual icon on the city skyline.