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MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating "a green haven among skyscrapers" in Nanjing

China Architecture News - Aug 16, 2022 - 15:56   1558 views

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

MVRDV has won a competition to design a new mixed-use residential and commercial complex on the edge of the Jiangbei New Area’s Financial District, Nanjing, China.

Called Oasis Towers, a pair of 150-metre-tall towers creates "a green haven among skyscrapers" for residents in a dense and rapidly developing part of the city.

Covering a total of 166,000 square meters, the mixed-use complex will incorporate residential and retail units, offering "curving, stratified cliffs" to emulate nature. 

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

"The Chinese metropolis of Nanjing is growing rapidly," said MVRDV. "To enable this growth, in 2015 the government formed the Jiangbei New Area, expanding Nanjing to the west across the Yangtze River."

MVRDV nestles a green landscape between two 150-metre-tall towers. The project spans two adjacent blocks on the edge of the Jiangbei Financial District masterplan. 

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

The project’s two L-shaped towers, each 40 storeys in height, face each other from the north and south corners. The complex is raised on the 3-4-storey podium that forms a perimeter that encloses almost the entire site to create the protective environment at its heart. 

While this perimeter building bridges over pedestrian access routes and even the street between the two plots, it also creates a clear separation between the surrounding neighbourhood and the oasis at the centre of the design.

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

The complex incorporates trees and other greenery elements, the oasis forms a green landscape on the building’s cascading terraces, a lush environment for shopping in the building’s commercial floors from ground level up to the third floor. 

"This park-like space has a number of functions: it provides cooling and biodiversity, the canopy offers privacy by shielding the residents of the upper floors from the shoppers below, and it creates a walkable environment that connects the two plots across the central road," said MVRDV. 

"At the very centre of the public space, the landscape steps down below ground level to connect beneath the road, providing a convenient crossing point and allowing access to the metro station beneath the site," the office added.

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

"The contemporary architecture of Nanjing takes its inspiration from nature in form and appearance," said MVRDV founding partner Winy Maas

"With Oasis Towers we wanted to push this trend to the max – not only emulating nature with curving, stratified ‘cliffs’, but also to literally incorporate nature into the design with the greenery and by tapping into natural processes," Maas added. 

The design scheme will have a formal, gridded façade on its outer faces of the perimeter block to respond to the office skyscrapers that will emerge in its surroundings.

This exterior skin is shaped through the flowing curves of balconies, terraces, rooftops and small pavilions clad in recycled bamboo.

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

"The integration of nature into the design goes even further than its idyllic green environment, with nature playing an important role in the design’s sustainability strategies," the studio added.

Rooftops in the oasis that are not accessible will densely be planted with a variety of species that help to maximise biodiversity. 

Also included in these non-accessible roofs are two 500-square-metre reed beds that naturally filter and clean water as part of the building’s greywater recycling system.

The studio paid attention to the positioning of the towers to take advantage of the prevailing western winds to maximise natural ventilation. 

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

The deep balconies are staggered to provide plenty of natural light, while reducing solar gain in the summer, along with the carefully placed trees that provide extra shade in the warmer months. A water-source heat pump makes use of the adjacent river to reduce energy consumption.

According to MVRDV, "the towers appear highly varied at a glance, with every floor differing in shape from its neighbours above and below, yet the design in fact is highly efficient and regularised; floor plans for large sections of the towers are almost identical, with only variations in the shapes of the curving balconies." 

Planters separate neighbouring balconies, ensuring that the green oasis extends to the very top of the design.

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

The project is commissioned by the Nanjing Jiangbei New District Financial Center Development Co. to occupy the neighbouring plots 18-34 and 18-35 in the Jiangbei Financial District Masterplan. 

MVRDV is now working with the client in the design development phase.

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Site plan

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

East axonometric

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Floor plan retail

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Floor plan tower

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Steps all

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Tower concept

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Urban design concept

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Urban identity diagram

MVRDV designs nature-inspired Oasis Towers creating

Water recycling 

MVRDV was set up in 1993 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands by Winy Maas, Jacob van Rijs and Nathalie de Vries. MVRDV is world-renowned architecture and urban design practice providing solutions to contemporary architectural and urban issues.

MVRDV and Mumbai-based architecture practice StudioPOD recently transformed a neglected space below Mumbai’s concrete Senapati Bapat Marg flyover into a new community space in Mumbai, India.

The studio revealed design for a mixed-use tower in Albania. 

Project facts

Project name: Oasis Towers

Architects: MVRDV

Location: Nanjing, China

Year: 2021–

Client: Nanjing Jiangbei New District Financial Center Development Co, Ltd

Size and Programme: 166,000m2 mixed-use (residential and retail)


Founding Partner in charge: Winy Maas
Partner: Wenchian Shi
Design Team: Kyo Suk Lee, Sredej Bunnag, Shanshan Wu, Daehee Suk, Americo Iannozzone, Haochen Yang, Echo Zhai, Albert Parfonov, Jiani You, Evan O'Sullivan
Environmental Advisors: Peter Mensinga, Arjen Ketting

Partners

Structural engineering & MEP: TJAD 

All renderings © Atchain

All drawings © MVRDV

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