Jianshang Sports Complex / CCDI
Text description provided by the architects. After five years of design and construction, the Jianshang Sports Complex was completed and fully put into use. Jianshang Sports Complex is the first vertical gymnasium in China, once praised by People’s Daily as “the stairway of giants”. This metaphor illustrates the morphological strategy adopted by the building in adapting to site conditions and functional needs. Due to the limitations of the site, the stadium is superimposed vertically. Echoing the urban space around the site, the building volume is dislocated and superimposed, giving way to the school on the south side and forming a shaded outdoor plaza on the north side.
Taking advantage of the terrain, the main gymnasium and swimming pool are embedded in the ground, occupying the first basement to second-floor space. The badminton hall and tennis hall are large and concentrated, placed on the top four and fifth floors respectively, and on the third floor between the upper and lower large venues, some small venues are set up, such as taekwondo, fencing, table tennis, dance, and fitness, etc.
From a macro point of view, the sports complex integrates into the city without losing its personality. On the one hand, the dislocated volumes of the building weaken the sense of heaviness and harmonize with the surrounding urban fabric. On the other hand, the minimal form establishes a distinctive visual identity that is easily detached from the chaotic urban background.
Looking closer, the characteristics of the porosity of the building gradually become obvious. At the base of the building, an open foyer connecting north and south invites citizens to enter and exit freely. On each upper floor, there are terraces, gardens, and overhead resting spaces. Stairs connect up and down and connect with the plaza on the ground floor, encouraging citizens to continue using these open spaces after closing.
Echoing Shenzhen’s hot and humid climate, the covered open space provides citizens with shade under the scorching sun and a place to walk freely. These wallless open spaces accommodate the necessary functions such as foyers and elevator halls, so that the boundaries of the air-conditioned rooms are as recessive as possible, creating a free and open atmosphere of activity. Our goal is to build a “transparent” building, not to pursue the transparency projected on the retina, but to restore the transparency of the construction logic in the brain.
The structure faithfully expresses the architectural space, and the dislocated boxes in the architectural form can also be interpreted as a structure that is dislocated up and down. The main structure is mainly supported by six reinforced concrete cores, each layer is jointly stressed by the inter-layer steel truss and the waist truss, up and down dislocation, to achieve an ultra-large span and ultra-long cantilever. The structural module is controlled by the reasonable joint spacing of the steel structure members, and this modular system also runs through the scale division of buildings, such as curtain walls, landscapes, and indoor spaces as well. It is undeniable that this is a behemoth that uses more than 9,000 tons of steel. However, the main structure formed by the members dissolves the overall rough feeling and combined with the architectural form, there is a sense of light floating and rising.
The building façade and structure are connected geometrically, constructively, and materially in a clear and affirmative way. The façade of the building adopts a double-layer skin, the outer layer is aluminum mesh, and the inner layer is Low-E low iron glazed glass. The outer layer of aluminum mesh extends from the wall to the outdoor ceiling, underlining a simple and complete sense of wholeness. Due to the translucency and directionality of the aluminum mesh, there are subtle changes in light and darkness under different viewing angles, time periods, and weather conditions. The change in surface texture relieves the sense of oppression caused by the huge volume of the building. The double skin ensures the amount of light entering the rooms while effectively preventing glare. According to the architects, it will be an energy-saving stadium that makes full use of natural lighting and ventilation, which can effectively reduce the energy consumption of lighting and air conditioning during operation.
Most of the indoor venues reflect an austere industrial aesthetic. This is not only an echo of cost constraints, but also a subjective desire to “return to basics”, eliminating some optional decorations, so as to achieve less cost and more use, and back to the essence of creating space for sports as well. The Jianshang Sports Complex is the project with the largest difficulty, the widest coverage, and the highest depth of control among all the projects hosted and designed by CCDI Jing Studio. If we use the analogy of literary writing, the creation of the sports complex is equivalent to writing a long novel. In the protracted battle of five years and six months, we supervised thousands of technical drawings, hundreds of visits to the construction site to check the progress and quality, and dozens of technical and management coordination meetings. In addition to the work of architecture, we also carried out the design of the interior, landscape, curtain wall, signage, lighting, and other professions, and supervised, reviewed, and coordinated the design work of nearly 40 other related professions.
When the Jianshang Sports Complex which embodies the hard work of countless people, stands tall on the ground and waits for the test of time, if someone can see a little bit of painstaking creating beauty, and if the citizens can feel the open and inclusive cultural spirit transmitted by this building when enjoying the sports, it will be a great reward and encouragement for us.