In 2018, a consortium formed of Shanghai HuaDu Architecture & Urban Design Co., Ltd. (HDD) and the Shanghai Tongji Urban Planning & Design Institute (TJUPDI) secured the bid for the Henan Luxembourg Center project. As a pivotal project of the Sino-European "Silk Road in the Air", the center is designed as a large-scale foreign service complex to accommodate various functions, including international commerce, foreign affairs services, business finance, and cultural tourism. Strategically planned by the Henan Provincial Party Committee and Provincial Government, the center will serve as a new platform for Henan's international engagement and a fresh avenue for Sino-Luxembourg cultural exchange, as a response to an important directive from President Xi Jinping on developing "Silk Road in the Air" between Zhengzhou and Luxembourg.
Situated in the southern part of the Longhu area within Zhengdong New District, and benefiting from Longhu Financial Center and the Zhengdong CBD, Henan Luxembourg Center occupies a significant position at the intersection of the Ruyihe River urban development trajectory and the Central Ring Road city vitality axis, making it an important landmark.
The site covers 13.65 hectares and is divided into five plots. The project’s total floor area is 402,000 square meters. To highlight the idea of multidimensional space-time, cultural integration, and shared platform, the design strategy revolves around shaping urban landmarks, vitalizing surrounding neighborhoods, creating a circular corridor, and providing green spaces, which finalized as a double-centered, three-zoned, two-axes layout. Two distinctive landmarks, "Windows into Time and Space" – the Longhu International Center, and "Rhyme of Castles" – the Luxembourg Visa Center, broke ground, serving as multifunctional hubs for international exchange, innovation and development, and eco-cultural communities.
Specifically, Longhu International Center, primarily designed to accommodate international business and financial headquarters, has been completed and put into use, while Luxembourg Visa Center is anticipated to be finished by the end of 2023.
Longhu International Center | Henan Luxembourg Center Project Plot 1
As the flagship landmark of the Henan Luxembourg Center Project, Longhu International Center of plot 1 is located at the northern gateway of the Longhu Lake. It is bordered by the Aviation Service Center office building to the north, and faces the Luxembourg Visa Center across the Central Ring Road to the south. To its east lies the ecological landscape on the western bank of the Ruyihe River. To the west, it aligns coherently with the Foreign Affairs Service Center (plot 4) and Foreign Trade Center (plot 5). As a 5A-grade office building comprising 11 above-ground stories and 2 underground levels for parking, the project has a footprint of 11,775 square meters, with a total floor area of 60,036 square meters. The project aims to bring together various foreign resources in Zhengzhou and Henan Province to enhance the business and office environment in the Longhu area of Zhengdong New District, and therefore strengthening its internationalization and industrial cohesion.
#Bridging Space & Time
The project builds on the concept of "Windows into Time and Space", emphasizing the intersection of ancient wisdom and modern culture in both Eastern and Western traditions, as well as the transcendent aspect of time and space – the ancient Silk Road initiated trade exchanges between East and West, and the modern Silk Road in the Air continues this journey. "Four-dimensional space" symbolizes the crossing of time and progress.
The clean, minimalistic façade features lineal elements in a fading beige tone, complemented by translucent Low-E glass. At night, the building's dynamic night lights symbolize a tunnel through time and space.
The design in the form of concentric squares not only symbolize time and space, but also catalyze multidimensional interaction between the building and its urban context. By creating an opening that penetrates the building and forming an atrium in the building’s heart, the design strengthens the east-west trajectory of the area which extends from the Ruyihe Riverbank to the commercial area of plot 4 and plot 5 on the building’s west by increasing visual connection. Additionally, the cascading terraces and cantilevered viewing platform in the central atrium introduce the beautiful natural river view into the building.
Another feature of the design is its open interfaces towards the city. All entrances are designed with public squares, while a double-height, ceremonial lobby is designed for the main entrance on the west. Water feature is also used in the landscape design of the west entrance, forming a dialogue with the beautiful natural waterscape and vegetation on the open and spacious east entrance.
The building’s massing challenges the typical image of an enclosed, confined office building. The building comprises 11 above-ground stories, with levels 1-4 as service floors for retail, dining and conventions, while levels 5-11 provide high-end headquarters office spaces with shared semi-open viewing platforms.
The lower floors have a concentric squares shaped layout where service programs, including reception areas, restaurants, conference centers, flexible workstations and green spaces are organized around the central courtyard with great accessibility, blurring the boundaries between work, leisure and ecology.
From the 6th to 9th floors, a central atrium space stretching 30 meters in length and 15 meters in height – the "Window of Europe" – shapes an image of a tunnel through time and space formed of layers and layers of hollow windows, representing an open and shared platform for cultural fusion. The atrium and terraced garden provide unique city views, creating visual dialogue with the natural view of the Ruyihe River and riverbank park.
Considering the multiple use of the public space, and to maximize the building’s transparency and openness, cascading terraces are designed on the eastern part of the atrium facing the Ruyihe River. The peaceful river view blurs the boundary between indoor space and shared semi-open space. Through varied windows, the view over the landscape changes with each step, creating a relaxing and pleasant spatial experience for socializing.
Through an iconic and coherent design, the Henan Luxembourg Center strives to create a contemporary masterpiece that blends Eastern and Western cultures, fosters diversity and vitality, and embodies eco-friendly, low-carbon values. It brings a new landmark to the Longhu area with a design that catalyze multidimensional interaction transcending time and space.
Project Name: Longhu International Center
Design: Shanghai HuaDu Architecture & Urban Design Co., Ltd. (HDD)
Collaborative Design: Shanghai Tongji Urban Planning & Design Institute Co., Ltd. (TJUPDI)
Location: Zhengzhou, Henan Province, China
Site Area: 11,775.14 square meters
Floor Area: 60,036.37 square meters
Photographer: ZHANG Yong (ZY Architectural Photography)
Chief Architect: KUANG Xiaoming
Urban Planning and Design: ZHANG Yunxin, YU Yang, CHEN Peng
Architectural Design: AN Xiaoguang, YANG Yushan, GAO Qinmei, HOU Jiahui, LIU Guangzhe, YU Yongyong, WANG Chao, XU Yixin, ZHAO Min, LU Jing
Structural Design: YUAN Zhili, QI Xiaozhe, ZHOU Zhen, HU Jianjun, YUE Feng, ZHONG Junjie, KONG Lingwei, LI Meiqi, ZHANG Chao, JI Chen
Water Supply and Drainage Design: JIANG Yi, CHEN Luhua, ZHANG Ting, LIU Miaomiao, YU Xinguang
HVAC Design: CHAI Yunliang, XUE Xiaofeng, LIU Jiakang
Electrical Design: JIA Lin, REN Fusheng, ZHANG Yi, CAO Yuhao, CHEN Yu, YUAN Jiangfeng, WAN Danqi
Landscape Design: ZHU Yiyu, WANG Dandan, FU Xiao, YANG Gang, FEI Yidong