SOM's new waterfront to be anchored by lighthouse-inspired skyscraper
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has designed many major buildings in its time, including the world's tallest, but its latest work involves the creation of an entire waterfront neighborhood. The Jiuzhou Bay project will feature a new supertall skyscraper and will offer pedestrians pleasant shaded spaces to stroll along, while also integrating solar power and rainwater collection.
Jiuzhou Bay is slated for Zuhai, China, which has been in the headlines lately as the site of the world's longest sea-crossing bridge. It'll consist of a 40-acre (16.1-hectare) mixed-use neighborhood with offices, residences, retail areas, plus a ferry terminal and bus station. Five large canopies will be installed to create a series of covered pedestrian alleyways and courtyard areas along the waterfront. The canopies will also incorporate sustainable technology.
"The new neighborhood is designed to utilize Zhuhai’s most abundant natural resources – the sea and sun – to reduce natural gas consumption, conserve water, and create a comfortable environment for residents, office workers, shoppers, and nightlife seekers, helping to activate the site both day and night," explains the firm in a press release. "The canopies also increase interior comfort and building efficiency by filtering daylight, harvesting energy via photovoltaic panels, and capturing rainwater."
The project will be defined by a 1,045-ft (318-m) tower that's inspired by the form of a lighthouse's Fresnel lens. It will host 35 floors of office space and will be topped by a 20-story Ritz-Carlton Hotel boasting a skybar and observation deck. It will also feature a large atrium area, offering visitors choice views of the bay.
Jiuzhou Bay is the product of an architecture competition and is confirmed to be going ahead. SOM told us that construction is expected to be completed in 2022.