Yangtze River International Conference Center / Morphosis Architects

Yangtze River International Conference Center / Morphosis Architects

© Fangfang Tian© Fangfang Tian© Fangfang Tian© Fangfang Tian+ 32

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

Text description provided by the architects. The Yangtze River International Conference Center represents a world-class hub for global connectivity and a key asset in Nanjing’s expansion westward across the Yangtze River to Jiangbei New Urban Center. Located at a key position between the coastal cities of eastern China and the Yangtze River Delta region, Jiangbei District is fast becoming China’s newest epicenter for world trade. Commissioned by the New Jiangbei District of Nanjing City, the Yangtze River International Conference Center embodies a charter for sustainable and environmentally friendly development while creating an exceptional meeting and event venue for the region.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

The building sits at a unique geographic and cultural crossroads in Nanjing, bordering the banks of the Yangtze River, the booming commercial outskirts of Jiangbei District and the historic fabric of the Nanjing Metropolitan Area. In its mass, orientation and form, the tower engages its riverside site while anticipating the future collective urban landscape of office towers emerging in Jiangbei.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

The building’s design is conceptually and formally inspired by its namesake, the Yangtze River, which provides one of the most important arterial links across China and has shaped human development in the region throughout history. Like the river, the conference center connects the region to the wider world, supporting global development and trade. Formally, the flowing curves of the river are reflected in the building’s undulating podium, while the glittering titanium roof panels evoke sunlight playing on the water’s surface. Rising above the podium, the sharp and wide angles of the hotel tower evoke the sail of waste, the traditional wind river boat once common on the Yangtze.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

The main programmatic requirements inform the parts of the building; the podium welcomes more than 36,000 m2 conference space, while the single-charge tower houses a 4-star hotel with 340 rooms, with rooms facing the river. In the podium, the huge program area of ​​the convention center is systematically organized by clad box trusses, which define a flexible series of conference spaces flanking a 200-meter central arcade that divides the building into a north wing and South.

atrium diagram
atrium diagram
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

This arcade serves as the main circulation spine for the building, cut by short perpendicular bridges allowing access from the VIP entrances and the hotel tower. Leading visitors to the arcade, the grand formal entrance and atrium of the convention center are illuminated by a huge skylight, which frames the view upward to the hotel tower. This blur of interiority and exteriority is further accentuated by bringing the metallic facade of the hotel tower back into the building to become the dramatic curved forms of the atrium cladding.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

The boundary condition of the site, between the river and the city, shapes the undulating forms and the urban character of the conference center. On the city side to the north, the hotel’s tower facade uses a fully unified metal solar shading system, made up of efficiently paneled sections that come together to create a complex overall effect. During the day, the metal facade serves to shade the building and increase energy efficiency; in the evening, the lighting integrated into the facade creates a distinctive nocturnal presence in the city.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

On the river side, to the south, the sinuous quality of the façade reflects the organic nature of the riverside, with a metal and corrugated glass solar shading made up of over 90,000 distinct metal panels. The entire landscape is designed according to a “sponge landscape” principle, contributing to ecologically responsible management of runoff water which is particularly important for the riparian site. The high-performance facades and environmentally friendly landscaping contribute to the building’s “3-star rating”, the highest sustainable design rating recognized by China’s National Green Building Standard.

© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian
© Fangfang Tian

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