2DEFINE Architecture Wins Chinese Convention Center Project

Partnering with Dalian Urban Planning & Design Institute
Island Will Be Built to Showcase Facility

2DEFINE Architecture, a global architecture firm focused on quality design projects, known for prominent office tower, exposition and performing arts spaces worldwide, has won an assignment to lead the design of an extraordinary new convention center in China.

2DEFINE Architecture with local partner Dalian Urban Planning & Design Institute was selected to direct the design of the Yingkou Convention and Exposition Center, a four-story, 70,000-square-meter (750,000-square-foot) facility in Yingkou, China, a city of 2.2 million people located in the northwest province of Liaoning on the Bohai Sea.

The 430 million CNY (US$68 million/EUR53.4 million) center will be a unique, sea urchin-shaped building created to reflect its natural environment. The facility will be the centerpiece of a new harbor created off of a satellite central business district in the port city. The oblong building will have no front or back so it will face in all directions to allow 360-degree views. The convention center will be situated on a 130,000-square-meter (14,000,000-square-foot) man-made island which will serve as a business destination and feature outdoor promenades and gardens for use by local residents. The half-acre roof-top terrace will overlook the Bohai Sea, and offer an outdoor space adjacent to the ballroom. An elevated four-lane road with pedestrian walkway will connect the island with the mainland. Construction of the island will begin in 2012 and the building is slated for completion in 2014.

“The Yingkou Convention and Exposition Center will be a bold yet inviting facility in a very prominent port location,” said Marshall Strabala, founder and lead designer of 2DEFINE Architecture. “This type of building, when done right, becomes the heart of a city, a place for weddings, meetings, business and leisure. The trick is to create a building and environs that can be used 365 days a year, whether there is a major conference being held or not. We are planning two large seafood restaurants with harbor views and outside terraces and a 1200-square-meter (12,916-square-foot) waterfront promenade. Parking for 350 cars and the loading docks will be hidden below grade, and the basement space will act as a buffer for any storm surge.”

“2DEFINE is very pleased to have been selected for this project to make our exciting, creative vision, a reality, ” he added.
The 45-meter (150-foot)-high center will boast a 25,000-square meters (270,000-square-foot) contiguous exhibition hall, 5,100-square meters (55000-square-feet) of meeting rooms, a 200-seat fixed-seat auditorium, a 900-seat banquet hall, and a large glass atrium. The super structure will feature a unique rain screen system on the roof that will reflect natural light during the day, and create a soft glowing form at night with minimal use of artificial light. Qiao Zhang, a partner at 2DEFINE, describes the building as a, “Significant green development in northern China, and a showcase for business development along the Bohai Sea. This building is planned to achieve a LEED certified rating and become a new symbol for the city, an important and growing export center.”

2DEFINE will work on the project with the Dalian Urban Planning and Design Institute which will serve as national partner and be the architect of record. 2DEFINE Architecture is the first architecture firm in China registered under a dual Chinese-foreigner national partnership. Strabala has previously designed comparable convention facilities. In 1993, while at Skidmore Owings Merrill, he served as the senior designer of several convention facilities, including the Hong Kong Convention & Exposition Center in Hong Kong, a world renowned convention center located on a man-made island jutting into Victoria Harbor.
Source = MARSHALL STRABALA
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