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REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

China Architecture News - Mar 19, 2021 - 16:10   6527 views

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

New York-based architecture practice REX has released its competition proposals, named SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0, for Shenzhen Opera House in China. REX was awarded third prize in this international.

Throughout competition, REX has created two versions of its proposal SOH 1.0 - REX refined the original proposal with a second scheme, SOH 2.0, to address the client’s and jury’s comments. 

REX's first design, named SOH 1.0, contrasts today’s prevailing archetype for performing arts centers—the "blanket of iconography"—and instead, stacks its program into a tower of culture. 

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

Followed by jury comments and the client's demands, REX's second iteration of the proposal, named SOH 2.0, maximized use of the site, and splitting the former tower into two iconic buildings to soften the design. 

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

The Shenzhen Opera House is the most important of the Ten Major Facilities in a New Era program launched by the City of Shenzhen in January 2020. The international competition was intended to create "a new cultural landmark and world-class art palace". 

The program of the Shenzhen Opera House included an Opera Hall, Concert Hall, Operetta Hall, Multifunctional Theater, and support spaces, on a 43-acre (17.5-hectare) landfill peninsula along Shenzhen Bay.

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

SOH 1.0

The pure volumes of Shenzhen Opera House’s venues are stacked into a tower of culture whose Opera Hall, Concert Hall, Operetta Hall, and Multifunctional Theater are stripped of all unnecessary program or geometry. Their shapes are dictated by functionality. The cultural tower achieves the Sydney Opera House’s extraordinary presence (minus the expensive, superfluous Blanket) with its unusual form and unexpected height, establishing it as a landmark in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area.

Of equal importance, its stacking also liberates an exceptional public space on Shenzhen Bay. With the majority of the site dedicated to landscape for citizen’s enjoyment, Shenzhen Opera House advances China’s goal of becoming an “ecological civilization."

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

"Wrapped in Chinese Golden Travertine, Shenzhen Opera House is reminiscent of a Shoushan stone seal, a modern totem at once a symbol of a rich heritage and a future that sets new paradigms," said REX in its project description. 

Stacking four large performance venues demands a robust vertical transportation system for both front-of-house and back-of-house circulation. To this end, a highly efficient ‘Super Core’ of elevators and stairs rises through the center of the tower. Composed of circulation columns tied together by steel trusses, the Super Core also functions as the building’s primary structural framework, from which are cantilevered the auditoria and the side- and backstages. The structural Super Core is transformed into a circulation superhighway.

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 1.0 proposal

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

SOH 2.0

REX's proposal, named SOH 2.0, was advanced to both address the Jury’s comments and retain its original boldness, efficiency, and public engagement.

The firm said that "his new arrangement maximizes use of the site and ‘softens’ the design—while maintaining its iconic strength—in three ways: by elevating the below-grade cultural center to an at-grade Gallery covered by a majestic canopy, by visually integrating the public realm under the canopy with a park both active and contemplative; and by splitting the former tower into two sculptural buildings placed on and through the canopy in a dynamic composition.

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

REX's proposed concept also allows Shenzhen Opera House to see and be seen, contributing to this aspiration. Opera, symphony, theater, and dance patrons are offered magnificent views as far as downtown Shenzhen and Shekou Port from the buildings’ elevated lobbies, terrace, and rooftop amphitheaters. In turn, the buildings’ unique forms and heights render Shenzhen Opera House visible far and wide—an inviting icon of culture.

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

Sheltered by a vast, light-diffusing canopy, the Gallery is home to the Shenzhen Opera House programs everyone can enjoy regardless of their final destination. In addition to museums, art education spaces, book bar, children’s art center, and literature center, visitors can glimpse down into the rehearsal rooms whose glassed-in volumes rise from Level B1 into the Gallery. 

Generous allées amongst the defined programs and lounges guide visitors along their journey, bathed in diaphanous light filtering through the canopy screens and protected from the searing heat or pouring rain. The Art Street leads visitors north to south from the grand entry, through the Gallery, to the park outside.

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

REX releases competition proposals SOH 1.0 and SOH 2.0 for Shenzhen Opera House

REX's SOH 2.0 proposal

REX is an internationally acclaimed architecture and design firm based in New York City. The firm, operating across many scales, REX is led by Joshua Prince-Ramus with REX’s think-tank of designers, hailing from diverse cultural and educational backgrounds.

Read more about REX's "disappearing" Necklace Residence in a jungle of long island and the firm's competition proposal for a skyscraper in Mexico City

All images courtesy of REX.

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