microcosm:
BAU348 Kunshan Hyper Complex

Kunshan City, Jiangsu Province, China

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Discipline

Architecture, Landscape Architecture

Typology

Mixed use, retail, sports, office, residential, hospitality, urban landscape

City

Kunshan City, Jiangsu Province, China

Date

2009-2015

Status

Completed 2015

Client

Kunshan City Construction Investment & Development Co., Ltd.

Program

Retail, food and beverage, office, apartments, SOHO (units for living and/or working), sports centre (indoor swimming pool, gym, spa), multi-function hall, underground parking

Microcosm: Kunshan Kang Ju Commercial (+SOHO, Sports, and Community) Project

Microcosm
In an attempt to counter the tendencies towards segregation of programs and land-use in current Chinese planning, BAU added a diversity of opportunities for work, housing, recreation and public facilities to the original brief for a shopping centre with restaurants. Consequently, small office/home office (SOHO) accommodation, sports facilities and a community multi-purpose hall have been added to the original brief for retail and restaurants. In short the shopping centre has become a microcosm of the city.

Hyper-urbanity
These various programs are compressed onto the site to produce a place of hyper-urbanity for the new western extension of Kunshan. This is an urbanity of the super-adjacency of diverse programs which bring unpredictability, behavioral freedom, tolerance and perhaps even the emergence of informal communities.

Public and cultural benefits
What would have been a single function shopping precinct suffering from the problems of a segregated planning attitude (eight hours of intense activity followed by periods of 16 hours of emptiness and inactivity – and all that means for urban safety and security), has now become an active and safe place over the complete 24 hour cycle. Shopping, eating, commercial and sporting activity during the day and into the early evening, and local community and SOHO residents’ activitiesduring the evening.

Relationship of built form to context
The context has typical contemporary Chinese urbanism characteristics: mono-functional land use zoning; large scale fenced blocks surrounded by wide roads; repetition of identical residential slab blocks;; gated residential communities; a lack of designed public open space. This project seeks an antidote to this monotonous context by providing: multi-functional programs (live, work, recreate); small scale pedestrian networks of lanes and paths; a variety of fine grain architecture; alternative, living choices; an array of public open spaces and street edges of human scale; and, in short, potentials to surprise.

Program resolution
The program is organized around the concept of two active and safe ground levels. The lower ground level houses the original retail and restaurant spaces. The upper “ground level’ houses the sports facilities and community meeting hall. The SOHO apartment towers and the park edge restaurants can also be accessed from this level.

Sustainability
Environmental initiatives include geo-thermal heat exchange; cross ventilated car parking; passive solar control; permeable landscape; and green roofs. It is an accredited MOHURD China Three Green Star building.

Project location
The site is located on the expanding eastern periphery of Kunshan, population 750,000, situated 40km from Shanghai. The building fronts the new Kunshan-Suzhou Boulevard to its south and a secondary road to its west. Bounding the site on the east is high density residential project under construction, and an existing 3ha public park. To the north an office-retail building with fresh food market at ground level.

2005-2010

Private Landscapes

Shanghai

2011

Playgrounds

Public Landscapes

Jiangyin

Residential

Retail

Urban Landscapes

2015

Education

Hospitality

Mixed Use

Nanjing

Sports

Office

2000-2005

Melbourne

Public

Urban Design

Kyneton

Culture

Healthcare

Hotel

Suzhou

2014

Hangzhou

Structures & Pavillions

Wuxi

Planning

2013

2012

Fuding

Shaoxing

Chongqing

Kunshan

Office

Wuhan

Hotel

Healthcare

Cixi

Ningbo

Meishan

Canberra

Jingzhou

Chengdu

Hospitality

Culture

1990-2000

Xiamen

Residential

Hopetoun

Caofeidian

Huai’an

Xi'an

Xinyu

Mixed Use

Retail

Sports

multiple rooms of difference:
BAU253 Shanghai Qingpu Renheng Yunjie Entrance Garden

active cultural edges, passive natural centres:
BAU402 Shanghai Qingpu Qin Yuan Lake Park

intimate, cool, sheltered and lively:
BAU268 Xinqiao Commercial Street + Shop Housing

formal teaching and informal learning:
BAU540 Gaochun New District Kindergaten to Year Nine School

an exercise in robustness:
BAU333 Jiangyin Huifu Office Tower

effortless complexity: learning from water-town:
BAU222-2 Shanghai Qingpu Zhujiajiao Commercial

no longer but not only:
BAU213-3 Jindi Yunhu Market

actualizing the virtual:
BAU 213-2 Jindi Yunhu Sports and Activity Center

geometry, history, art, craft, iconography, and pragmatics: an exploration of intention, coding, narrative, and meaning
BAU021 Olinda Green + Public WC

there is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in:
BAU015 Jan Juc House, Victoria, Australia

BAU009 house in the sky

surreal adjacencies:
BAU019 Marymount Residence, Guest Accommodation, Stable + Office

mini-city of culture:
BAU590 Nanjing Pukou Haiqiao Community Service Center

keeping a low profile:
BAU 214 Suzhou Qingshan Hotel Phase I

positive space, human scale, and a blue-green net:
BAU 213-1 Jindi Yunhu Housing

dis-integrated guest houses :
BAU495 Pine Pillow Retreat

don’t look at me, don’t look at me:
BAU436 Nanjing Jiangning Demonstration Kindergarten

new buildings, old topography:
BAU424 Suzhou Qingshan Hotel Phase 2

don’t just re-use the typology, improve it!
BAU310-1 Hangzhou Changbanxiang Housing

defining the perimeter, programming the centre, inhabiting them both:
BAU238 Town Plaza, Xinqiao, Jiangyin

turning outside-in:
BAU199-2 Wuxi Fudi Forte Parktown Sales Pavilion

beyond PODS, networks, and nodes:
BAU552 Chengbei Urban Design project, Nanjing

podium and bill(ding)board:
BAU547 Nanjing Yaxi Town Central Hospital

inner sanctuary, outer crust:
BAU546 Nanjing Gaochun Qiqiao Hospital

an excessive minimalism:
BAU478-A U-Park Incubator, Shang Qing Huai, Nanjing

a plane of reference:
BAU474 Nanjing Zijin Gaochun Science and Technology City

rips in the fabric by place:
BAU461 Nanjing Tangshan Tourist Resort South District

other ideas of hospital:
BAU446 Fuding Hospital

architecture AND terrain:
BAU445 Suzhou Hi-tech District Cultural Center

crust: in-between and on the edge
BAU426 Shaoxing Jianhu Keyan Tourist Resort Planning

eco urbanism:
BAU425 Chongqing Eco Valley City

microcosm:
BAU348 Kunshan Hyper Complex

beyond the picturesque:
BAU347 Kunshan White Pagoda Park

don’t just re-use the typology, improve it!
BAU310 Hangzhou Changbanxiang Housing

building a community not just housing:
BAU302 Shanghai Ludi Baoshan

upside down program – ‘private’ circulation becoming ‘public’ circulation:
BAU254 Shanghai Wai Gao Qiao Culture Centre

extra-large private space as public space:
BAU199 Parktown, Housing, Fudi Forte, Wuxi

mini-me:
BAU197 Jindi Sanlin Pavilion

staggering:
BAU191 Wuhan Cuiwei Housing

urban camouflage:
BAU227 Hangzhou Sports Centre

positive space, human scale, and a blue-green net:
BAU213_1 Jindi Yunhu Housing

the resort at the end of the yellow dirt road:
BAU543 Emerald Village at Soul Bay

critical regionalism and abstraction:
BAU487 Nanjing Yaxi Citta-Slow

hospital for the ill, health care for the healthy, aged care for the elderly: BAU469 Zhaoxiang Hospital

communities as schools and schools as communities:
BAU408 Networks School Zhangjiang

tear open the package: BAU247 Qingpu NGS Supermarket

urban sponge:
BAU324 Cixi Commercial and Culture Center

lyrical islands in pragmatic seas:
BAU530_1 Nanjing Gaochun Su-Wan Interchange Hub

fractured enormity:
BAU281 Chongqing Huarun

ring roads AND peripheral parks:
BAU243 Shanghai Ring Park

simple box OR 3 points in space – you choose:
BAU204-2 Ningbo Wanda Office

many utopias:
BAU129 Xinhu Pearl City Housing Development

a close family:
BAU125 Zhejiang Power Company HQ

stretching, squeezing, bending, trimming:
BAU550 Huanglong Xigu Urban Design

BOTH networks AND objects:
BAU497 Wyndham Cove Eco Sub-urb

ethics, democracy, difference:
BAU470 towards a socially sustainable Canberra

warp and woof:
BAU460 Jingzhou Museum

sustainable technologies for clean living:
BAU396 Nanjing Residential

network of learning:
BAU341 Yushanwan School

not in galleries, but a way of seeing:
BAU338 Jingqiao Ramp Restaurant

shopping sandwich:
BAU321 Jiangyin Wuxing Commercial Centre

celebrating the collective, the intimate, the sustainable, and the local:
BAU312 Suzhou School

21st century Ponte Vecchio:
BAU287 Shanghai 2010 World Expo Bridge

antidote: not another ghetto city:
BAU285 Chengdu North Central

at last …finally …some diversity:
BAU282 Jindi Sanlin Office

recycling and beyond
BAU264 Jiashan Lu Apartment Block

an assemblage of difference:
BAU256 Shanghai Hongqiao Performing Arts Center

streets as shelters, bars as amphitheaters, landscapes as playgrounds:
BAU235 Jinqiao Community Bars

reduce, reuse, recycle:
BAU220 Shanghai Sculpture Space

binary oppositions defining a field of operation – all we wanted was a park:
BAU122 Xiamen International Exhibition Centre

the hotel as microcosm of the city:
BAU018 Marque Hotel

…very strange:
BAU016 Penny Lane

the beautiful and the extraordinary:
BAU013 Hopetoun Bush Resort

a dynamic yet stable vehicle:
BAU510 Suzhou Tram Co. Headquarters

palimpsest:
BAU486A Jiangyin Docklands Park

innovation both inside and out:
BAU433 Zhangjing Nobel Lake Park & Network

exquisite corpse
BAU416 Genetic City Caofeidian

landscape becomes urban design becomes architecture:
BAU390 Duolan Dong Dong Mixed Use Complex

BAU386 Symbiotic City

repetition and difference:
BAU384 Kunshan Pavilions

no longer drowning – waving:
BAU339-2&3 Suzhou Creek Promenade

yet another point of view:
BAU339-1 Suzhou Creek Serpentine Park

ordinary not heroic, symbolic not monumental:
BAU318 Hangzhou Xiaoshan Government Headquarters

woven threads:
BAU234 Jiangyin Arbour Park

private precincts, public networks:
BAU226 Pudong Yangjing

creative networks:
BAU224 Chengdu Fenghuangshan

maximize commuication and cross fertilization:
BAU208 Linping New City Centre

more than just a technopolis:
BAU206 Hangzhou Xiasha New City Centre

a second network embracing history, smalllness, and complexity:
BAU193 Chengdu West New District

a park for everyone and everyone in their park:
BAU189 Hongqiao Park

disorder – not randonmness but beyond order:
BAU182 Chengdu East Village

mosaics of teaching, networks of learning:
BAU149 Huai’an Tertiary Education District

walled cities within a walled city:
BAU147 Xi’an High-Tech Precinct CBD

co-existence without incompatibility:
BAU138 Jiangxi Xinyu Networks City

clarity and unpredictable adjacencies:
BAU119 Jinqiao Sports & Leisure Centre

space-time conflict:
BAU544 Shanghai University Campus

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