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A sustainable garment manufacturing plant that rehabilitates the poor wetland

A beautiful project has been designed and completed in Guilin, China by Ronald Lu & Partners and is both sympathetic to the landscape and conceived with sustainability at its heart.

A sustainable garment manufacturing plant that rehabilitates the poor wetland

Located near Guilin in Guangxi Province, China, INTEGRAL is at one with the landscape that surrounds it. INTEGRAL is a modern garment factory and the project designed by Ronald Lu & Partners (RLP) is exceptional in both its concept and realisation.

Considered to be a ‘sustainable development garden’, the facility embraces the fundamental concepts of Buddhism through its architecture and sustainability elements are incorporated into every aspect of its design.

INTEGRAL by Ronald Lu & Partners

The total site is large, at more than 511,800 square metres, with the highest point of the building only 22 metres in elevation.

The architect has devised the project horizontally instead of vertically and has integrated the production workshop and craft centre seamlessly into the surrounding environment.

Bright green grass and trees in the foreground in front of the buildings of Integral with the peaks of mountains in the background.

The natural landscape is the main focus of this large factory where the buildings play a supporting role to the green aesthetic.

With deference to the location and to culture the architectural language of INTEGRAL includes distinctive blue bricks and bamboo panels in the exterior and a large semi-transparent bamboo curtain on the façade of the craft centre’s wall helps to soften the overall mass of the structure.

A man sits in an ampitheatre-like area looking towards the bamboo facade of Integral.

“Meaningful biophilic design is applied in the urban spaces around us through natural shapes, forms and materials used in building design, and by daylighting, natural ventilation, greening, and inward and outward views,” says lead architect on the project, Guymo Wong, Director and Head of China at Ronald Lu & Partners.

Adding to the rich portfolio of projects both completed and on the drawing board, INTEGRAL is a masterful project from RLP.

Between two integral buildings and patches of green grass with orange flowers, the peaks of mountains are visible in the distance.

Established in 1976 by Dr Ronald Lu, the practice focuses on human-centric design for the future and at the core of each concept is sustainability.

Commissions span the range of trans-orientated development, commercial, education, residential, civic and community and healthcare projects as well as hospitality and retail and INTEGRAL is yet another exemplar project from this renowned practice.

Photography by Wuqingshan, Arch-Exist
The exterior glass facade of Integral at sunset, reflecting on a body of water in the foregrand, and with the silhouette of mountains in the background.



Client: Esquel Group

Location: Guilin, China

Architect: Ronald Lu & Partners

Principal Architect: Guimo Wong

Design team: Henry Cheung, Matthias Ma, Darren Tsang, Zhu Mufeng, Tim Williams

Interior design: Ray Chen + Partners Architect

Landscape Designer: P Landscape Co., Ltd.

Services Engineer: Tianjin Zhongtian Architecture Design 

Builder: China Construction First Building (Group) Corporation Limited

Date of completion: September 2020

Site area: 511,800 sqm

Gross floor area: 285,725 sqm

Related: The importance of biophilia in high-density cities

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