This masterplan project is at its core a collaborative project, and tOD’s role as Creative Director is the catalyst to its on-going development. After assessing the client brief which called for a Fashion City named Oriental Milan, tOD was able to modify the brief and set an initial strategy that called for the transformation of the masterplan into a deeply sustainable Design hub, at the core of which is a multi-disciplinary design school, supplemented with Fashion, Architecture, Art and Technology programs.
tOD then introduced a competition between two architectural firms, to come up with original designs that fall within its initial strategy concept. The evaluation of the two innovative designs led to the formation of the final strategy and masterplan team comprising of PLP/Architecture, Arthesia and BDSP. Thus the N+ masterplan was born.
N+ is specifically designed as an epicenter for the creative industry.
The project is a creative catalyst for Ningbo - China’s largest clothing manufacture base and the origin of the country’s modern garment industry.
N+ sets up a new urban genre: a curated, experiential space working simultaneously as a headquarters campus, R&D incubator, design school, cultural space and a brand-interaction venue. The organizational strategy, based on intensifying spontaneous encounters, laminates programs, character and atmosphere within an evolving urban experience.
N+ is organized within four distinct districts. Located within an urban forest, a design school and a botanical garden fuse design research with biomimicry and link the central park to the river. To the north, the headquarters of global fashion brands form a dense high-rise district. Along the waterfront is a cultural district with a theatre, museum and yacht club. To the south, a labyrinthine neighborhood – a contemporary reinterpretation of a Hutong – mixes boutique hotels, designer concept stores, fashion villas and a very active ground level. Above street level, a ring-shaped Catwalk connects the districts. In the absence of cars, the ring reinvents an urban typology: an elevated agora elicits novel ways to negotiate the city. Its infrastructure supports a localised micro-climate and engages in energy and water arbitrage among the districts. The multiplicity forms a space of experimentation, where design and research interact; where theatre is a playground and where buyers, brands and shoppers merge in an augmented culture of urban density.
Location: Ningbo, CN
My Role: Creative Director
Additional Credits: Masterplan - PLP Architecture
Environmental Consultant - BDSP
Strategy Consultant - Arthesia