Massive maritime museum makes use of rain and shine
Cox Architecture's National Maritime Museum is an impressive new addition to the waterfront in Tianjin, China, that features an eye-catching curved design. The project boasts significant energy-efficient technology, including solar power and rainwater capture systems.
The Australian firm was commissioned to create the National Maritime Museum back in 2013, following an architecture competition, and the project also involved engineering giant Arup. The museum measures 80,000 sq m (roughly 860,000 sq ft) and its primary structure consists of 17,000 tonnes (roughly 19,000 US tons) of steel, while its exterior is finished in 3,500 sq m (37,600 sq ft) of glazing and 55,000 sq m (592,000 sq ft) of aluminum. Its largest cantilevered section juts out almost 42 m (137 ft).
There's also more to its exterior than you might assume at first glance. Its outer shell has an integrated drainage system to channel rainwater into storage tanks for use during the area's drier months, and its patterned facade helps shed snow loads, which can be heavy in that part of the world. Additionally, the building is designed to mitigate local seismic activity.
Up on the roof is a solar panel array, which reduces its grid-based electricity usage, while an energy-efficient geothermal heating system runs 100 m (328 ft) beneath the ground and helps maintain a comfortable temperature inside.
The interior layout of the building is spread over three floors and four primary interconnected wings.
"It is a landmark project comprising four wings, focusing on the themes of 'the ancient ocean,' 'ocean today,' 'journey of discovery' and 'the age of the dragon,' says Cox Architecture. "The three-story museum covers 80,000 square meters and contains six display areas and 15 exhibition halls. These halls are interconnected so that visitors are provided an opportunity to understand and interpret China's maritime evolution in relation to events in Europe, America, and wider Asia."
Source: COX Architecture