Civic center's stunning sweeping curves encircle multi-use public park
Following its unveiling of a huge train station in the ancient Chinese city of Jiaxing, MAD Architects is now set to return to the area with a new civic center. As was the case with the train station, the building will incorporate significant greenery, including a central park, and will also nod to traditional local design with its eye catching undulating exterior.
The Jiaxing Civic Center will be located next to a historic lake and the city's largest park. It will span a sizable 130,000 sq m (roughly 1.4 million sq ft) and its overall form is very much in line with previous MAD designs, with a flowing white ceramic tile exterior that's likened to a tarp blowing in the wind by the firm and is also inspired by the traditional local barrel tile roofs.
The building will host three separate venues: the Science and Technology Museum, the Women and Children Activity Center, and the Youth Activity Center. These will feature a striking wood-lined interior and will be naturally illuminated with skylights.
They will also be arranged around a central park that will double as an open-air plaza for events. According to MAD, the original trees on the site will be preserved as much as possible and help inform the design of the landscaping, which will also include winding paths and riverfront views, plus exercise areas.
"The first floor of the center has connections to the surrounding environment on all sides, through bordering the municipal traffic and wider landscape, or connecting the central lawn with the parklands on the periphery of the building," says MAD. "This semi-open, semi-private space can be used in a variety of ways, whether for daily activities, or as an open-air plaza for large urban cultural events. The public can climb towards the track from the central green space to walk or exercise, or visit the amphitheater and sunken plaza on the east side, before wandering into the parkland forest beyond the center to enjoy the wilderness."
The Jiaxing Civic Center is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. The busy firm also recently completed the Cloudscape of Haikou Library, while its much-anticipated Lucas Museum is on track for a 2022 opening.