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One substantial building formed from four perforated volumes

Clever lighting and monolithic perforated walls combine in ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center, China, to create an intriguingly illuminated modern castle.

One substantial building formed from four perforated volumes

The facade of ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center, in China, is at once imposing and intriguing. Four great white stone-like masses constructed of white perforated metal lean slightly towards each other, forming one substantial presence.

The overall size of the structure is emphasised by a combination of floodlights at each corner of the exterior contrasted with the warmer internal lighting. Between two of the masses, this welcoming light spills from a tall, triangular fissure that demarcates the entrance.

Lighting is cleverly used throughout the building to emphasise space, draw attention and distract. 100W LED flood lights hidden in landscaped light pits focus on the exterior corners of the building, and combined with internal lighting, they create the appearance of a glowing building.

Upon approach, it becomes evident that there is a moat-like body of water surrounding the building, creating a futuristic castle-like quality. The impressive building appears to emerge from the water, and the moat separates it from the surrounding world, creating a sense of calm.

This impressive white building, located in the Changqing Economic Development Zone, 20 kilometres away from the centre of Jinan, China, is an exhibition centre and office building. Designed by award-winning Beijing-based architecture and interior design studio aoe, the project embodies the studio’s ultra modern, clean aesthetic.

Once inside, visitors are greeted by a sweeping four storey atrium – accentuated in size by the miniature town which sits on the ground floor. Tiny trees line the banks of a petite river, which then winds its way through a gridded town.

The ebb and flow of changing coloured lights reflect against the mirrored stairs of ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center creating an immersive and visually stimulating visitor experience

From the first floor and up, the semi-sheer white metal mesh panelling continues, hiding the rooms beyond. Two metallic ramps cross the building at contrasting angles, reflecting the white walls and the tiny town back down to itself, compelling visitors to inspect the model from all available angles.

Having received an array of awards, including Architizer’s Best in Asia and Best Young Firm awards, aoe is certainly one to watch.


A view towards triangular windows in the ceiling of ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center, with one metallic bridge in the foreground.
A miniature town on the ground floor of ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center under reflective metallic bridges.
Stairs leading towards the perforated walls of the upper level of ShuiFa Information Town Industrial Exhibition Center.

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