Hangzhou, CN


Three Yards under Ten Big Camphor Trees: Future City Exhibition Hall / Meng Fanhao-gad · line+ studio

Future City Exhibition Hall is located in Huanglong Sub-district, Lucheng District, Wenzhou City, the former site of Huanglong Shopping Mall, which was founded in 1993. In the memory of many Wenzhou people, Huanglong Shopping Mall was a special symbol. They loved to come here to do shopping for big events, such as weddings, relocation.

In the course of economic transformation and urban renewal, the 27-year-old Huanglong Shopping Mall has completed its historical mission. It will be rebuilt into a future community integrating high-quality housing, business offices and commercial entertainment. As the public cultural space, Future City Exhibition Hall was first completed.

01 Reorganizing Site

The site is adjacent to the intersection of Guanghuaqiao Road and Guojing Road, and is located at the northwest corner. The site stretches linearly with small depth and elongated shape. When investigatin, we were attracted by the 10 large Camphor trees along the street outside the site, which was a playful beginning for the design.

Camphor is the symbol of the old site, and the exhibition hall is a new urban space. To create a harmonious relationship between the two is to respect the site, and to dialogue with the city. It is also what we want to express in this project – the meaning of a new art space to the old city symbol.

02 Establishing Space

All started from 10 camphor trees, which are kept intact. According to the arrangement of the tree rows, a pedestrian entrance and a vehicular entrance are established among them. As the streamlines merge, the main entrance is hidden behind the Camphor trees leading by the walls.

The space in the site is established horizontally by walls, forming three waterscape yards and two courtyards, layers upon layers, making the originally monotonous linear space much richer.

Half of beauty is good to be hidden. The function volumes are staggered, as the lobby, exhibition hall, café and office spaces are arranged around the courtyard in different rows.

Under the guidance of the walls, the path is not straight, based on the principle of alienation from the target, approaching circuitously, the free and random organization way, and making the varied feeling experience.

The flowing waterscape and scattered green plants serve as supplementary, and the transparent glasses are interspersed between the walls, allowing the light, shadow, air and street scenes to penetrate into the space. Wandering in it, the shallow water reflects the sky light and clouds, the whirling shadows of trees, emerging one after another and changing constantly.

03 Interactive Interface

Finally, we try to interact with the city through a recognizable interface at the southeast corner of the site.

The flowing waterscape contrasts with the volume of the glass, like a glass box floating on the water, which is readable but not close to each other, forming a limitation and connection between indoor and outdoor spaces.

The light-colored stainless-steel ribs are combined with the large super white hidden frame curtain wall. The wall is made of textured natural stone that is spliced together in a modular way. The light and elegant glass forms a sharp contrast with the rhythmic stretched wall, hidden in the green camphor, where visitors can experience the spirit of architectural aesthetics.


04 Remarks

Future City Exhibition Hall, with the courtyard as the core and the walls as the skeleton, is surrounded by 10 big Camphor trees. It resolved the negative space factors and established the relation among the site, the space and the city with a humble and unobtrusive attitude. In the future, the 10 Camphor trees will continue to grow as a symbol of old city, and the exhibition hall will also realize the artistic feedback to the old city in terms of form and content.

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Status: Built
Location: Wenzhou, CN
Firm Role: Architect
Additional Credits: Project Name: Future City Exhibition Hall
Project Location: Wenzhou, Zhejiang
Design Firm: gad · line+ studio
Chief Architect/Project Leader: Meng Fanhao
Design Team: Zhu Xiaojing, Zhu Mingsong
Floor Area: 1450 m2
Design Period: 2020/06-2020/08
Construction Period: 2020/06-2020/10
Landscape Design: iPD
Curtain Wall Coordination Unit: Zhejiang Zhongnan Construction Group Co., Ltd.
Structure: Steel Structure
Material: Super White Glass Curtain Wall, Travertine Curtain Wall
Photographer: Chen Xi