The Tencent Tower on the banks of the Pearl River in Guangzhou is set to become an icon of human life, of social exchange and opening up to the world; it should present an image of the modernity and serenity of an enterprise that’s proud of the workplace environment it has striven to create.
To achieve these goals, we’ve made eight choices that form the basis of the project.
Choice number One: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE URBAN
Friendly and welcoming, Tencent Tower has a mission to enhance Guangzhou,
it aims to impact the neighborhood,
aspires to embellish it;
it’s committed to playing its own specific urban role: it wants to turn the axis of symmetry between it and the adjacent tower to the west into a tree-lined strip that’s a social hub opening up a perspective on the Pearl River.
To the north, Tencent Tower hopes to bring life to the plaza, which will be surrounded, on both sides of the social hub, by numerous exciting small spaces, bars, restaurants, kiosks…
On its own site, Tencent Tower will accommodate a genuine commercial street, animated by pop-ups, restaurants, museums, cinemas… This street will be connected by escalator to the metro and the plaza and will go all the way to the river so as to better frame the Guangzhou skyline and allow it to be admired.
Choice number two: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE A RIVERSIDE TOWER
We will build a large deck over the Pearl River,
then we will create large terraces for every kind of sporting and leisure activity;
we will also create views over the city and views over the river, and
will incline the tower’s façades to capture reflections of the river, with its buoyant life and its boats;
covered escalators will link the recreation terraces cantilevered over the riverbank, creating stunning views and showing the action of the Tencent community as people move around. It will be a twin spectacle, from the inside looking out over the panorama, but also the other way round, with the spectacle of people going up and down inside this vertical city.
Choice number three: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE A LANDSCAPE
Our trees will launch an attack on the Tencent Tower, from their standing position on the large-scale terraces.
This is a soaring landscape, highly readable, rising up from the Pearl River and foregrounding trees and shrubs, with light filtering through the workspaces and recreation spaces.
Choice number four: TENCENT TOWER IS ALL ABOUT INNOVATION
Tencent Tower will invent a new architectural typology that is all about
the joy of being alive and working;
on the large-scale terraces, we will build houses, greenhouses, ateliers,
that will act as so many different villages, stacked on top of each other every ten stories or so.
These small structures will sit on the main reinforced-concrete structure;
in a similar spirit, but on another scale, new systems will be installed in all the offices, new building blocks, office units, storage units, quiet spaces for taking time out that will all use different colours and be configured individually;
this mix, these contrasting scales, will give Tencent Tower a staggered profile and really make it stand out.
Choice number five: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE ECOLOGICAL AND HEDONISTIC
Tencent Tower will evolve in line with an economical logic that will drive the choice of materials and the most efficient technologies, and ensure we opt for repetitive and simple assemblages.
Genuine sustainable architectures are those people take real pleasure in preserving, and so they tend to become models of sustainable development.
Here, Tencent Tower will combine business with pleasure – through its gardens, and through its façades, which will vary according to the optimal orientations for avoiding direct sun, with inclined façades, and glass panels that become more reflective than others, remaining completely clear to the north and over surfaces in the shade.
Choice number six: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE LIGHT-FILLED
The façades will be 100% glass,
wind resistance will be ensured by fully glazed walls,
with the different types of glass revealing the geometries and variations in texture;
natural light and sun screens will create other interplays of geometry;
sunlight, through the trees, will be inspiringly dappled, guaranteeing
the pleasure of living comfortably, naturally,
with artificial light being adapted to the different ambiences and playing on all its shimmering possibilities, using every possible colour, and even streaming figurative images.
Choice number seven: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE VIVID, COLOURFUL, CHANGEABLE
Imagined as a world of sensations and surprises,
different “office types” will use multiple colours and multiple materials, offering, creating, an inner world adapted to each and every individual that varies with the time of day, the different colours of the lights, and the images streamed at night under the undersides of the terraces and over the greenery – a work-in-progress we appeal to Tencent’s creatives to share.
Choice number height: TENCENT TOWER WILL BE AN AFFIRMATION OF HUMANISM WITHIN THE VERTICAL CITY
Tencent Tower will pave the way for the Darwinian evolution of digital-industry species.