Steven Holl Architects has unveiled their latest LEED Platinum-targeted design for China, this time in Shanghai’s rapidly developing Fengxian District. The proposed Cultural and Health Center comprises two green-roofed energy-efficient buildings and will serve as a community hub for the surrounding neighborhood. The porous and curvaceous white facades of the building draw inspiration from clouds.
Commissioned by China’s largest food processing company COFCO, the Cultural and Health Center will be located in a park set next to the Punan Canal. The cloud-shaped, community-oriented design draws inspiration from “Clouds & Time,” a concept introduced in philosopher Karl Popper’s famous 1965 lecture on the evolutionary model of free will. The building’s many openings and circulation paths appear to promote free movement.
Elevated on a glass base, the Cultural Center is the larger of the two buildings and houses a library, gym, exhibition areas, and recreational facilities. A circular plaza with a pool that uses rainwater recycling is located between the two buildings. The Health Center, which sits opposite the Cultural Center, contains a health consultation and education center with pharmacy, consultation and examination rooms, a nursery, and lounges. Both buildings will be topped with green roofs and will use geothermal cooling systems to achieve LEED Platinum certification.