Australian architecture firm studio505 completed Phoenix Valley, a dynamic government-funded Theater, Film, and Arts complex that recently achieved China's highest rating in sustainability--the China 3 Star Rating. Winner of a 2009 design competition, the development comprises a series of jagged buildings with a mosaic-like facade matched by a patchwork of green roofs. In addition to its green roof technology, the 16-acre site features an abundance of environmentally friendly features and is recognized as the new cultural heart for Changzhou's Wujin District.
Although the original competition brief proposed diverting an existing axial canal to a less prominent position on site, studio505 chose instead to integrate the waterway into the site plan as an active element. That design decision created the opportunity for the architects to develop a central valley-like courtyard flanked by the green mountain-like building masses. The internal courtyard provides a quite and secure space separated from bustling city traffic that also serves as a circulation hub for all of the buildings.
As a major cultural center, Phoenix Valley boasts four cinemas, including a 1,000-seat grand theater that can host both traditional Chinese opera as well as digital immersive performances; a 5-story art gallery; an education center for 4,000 youth; an experience hall; a children’s playground; gymnasium for sports and dance; and a variety of retail and restaurant options. The project’s sustainable elements include its green roof and vertical garden facades that help purify the air and insulate the buildings; built-in photovoltaic and solar thermal arrays; natural ventilation; LED lighting; and stormwater management systems.
Images via studio505, © John Gollings