Construction is finally complete on the national pavilion for Shanghai’s 2010 World Expo, which is set to start on May 1st of this year. The China Pavilion, also known as the Oriental Crown, represents the spirit of the people of China and showcases a variety of sustainable building practices ranging from passive design to rainwater harvesting. The Oriental Crown is one of the 5 permanent green buildings on the Expo site, and it will be converted into a national history museum upon the conclusion of the expo next October.
Numerous pavilions have been designed around the expo’s theme of “Better Life, Better City,” and many of the pavilions focus upon sustainable and energy-efficient building practices. The China Pavilion sits right next to the Expo Boulevard and the Sun Valleys, which act as the center of the Expo.
Painted the same red as the Forbidden City, the Oriental Crown consists of four pillars with 6 floors expanding out and up. The 30 meter high roof is constructed from 56 wooden brackets, which represent the 56 minority ethnic groups of China. Additionally, nine folded scripts engraved on the surface of the building list the short names of China’s provinces.
Designed by He Jingtang, the director of the Architectural Academy of the South China University of Technology, the pavilion includes many energy saving technologies. The exterior of the structure offers a temperature buffer zone and natural ventilation for the interior, and the inverted shape of the pavilion acts as shading for entire building as well as the courtyard below. The roof of the structure includes eco-friendly landscaping and harvests rainwater.