Phoenix Television, one of the biggest media companies in China, is about the set itself apart from the competition with an incredible new building that defies the eye and pushes the boundaries of architectural design. The brainchild of innovative Chinese firm, BIAD UFo, the Phoenix International Media Center resembles a giant steel and glass shell nestled in the green surroundings of Beijing's Chaoyang Park.
The Phoenix Center is located in the city’s largest park, which was once home to the 2008 Summer Olympic beach volleyball games. Surrounded by lush greens and public pathways, the building’s open structure is inviting and it welcomes the park’s landscaping into its many public courtyards.
Covering over 200,000 square feet, the interior of the shell includes two independent office towers. One will house media and production offices as well as a number of broadcasting studios, while the other will be more geared towards the public with restaurants and shops. The interior also provides a great deal of open space for the public to interact with different media outlets. The towers are also connected and surrounded by a series of platforms and sky ramps covered with finely manicured landscape designs.
The elevation difference between the building’s two ends allows not only for optimum sunlight exposure throughout the offices, but also serves as a special consideration for the residential buildings next door who would otherwise have an obstructed view of the park. The stout stature also helps mitigate the effects of severe winds, which present challenges for other high-rise buildings.
The exterior plan includes a double layer of swirling steel. The slanting materials create a cone chimney effect, circulating natural air throughout the building and saving a great deal of energy. Rainwater will also be collected along the ribs of the structure and will travel down to tanks at the bottom of the building to be filtered and used throughout the courtyard ponds and landscape designs.