A City
Blossoms

An Olympic-sized stadium is the largest planned for construction within the next decade.

Like many cities in China, Hangzhou is undergoing rapid urban change. While the city center historically developed around the West Lake area, opportunities for industry and commerce have shifted the city’s expansion towards the Qian Tang riverfront. New construction has tripled the city’s size in the past decade, creating a modern architectural fabric that is powerful in scale, yet still in need of public space.

NBBJ, in partnership with CCDI, designed the Hangzhou Sports Park on a 400,000-square-meter site on the Qian Tang riverfront opposite the city’s new Central Business District.

The main stadium broke ground in 2011 and is slated for completion in 2017.

Activating the Site

The site plan is composed of three layers of activity. An above-grade platform defines the “sports boulevard,” which links programs such as the main stadium and tennis tournament facilities together. On the ground level, pathways, gardens and plazas form a network of public recreation activities designed for alternative and extreme sports. Sunken spaces and courtyards lead to an extensive below-grade retail pavilion containing boutique stores, restaurants and a multiplex cinema.

Integrated Computational Design

As worldwide demand for steel increases — by 78% in the last decade alone — so does the cost, which has skyrocketed 217% since 2007. That’s why we use parametric design to cut waste while creating functionality and form.

Our designers leveraged advanced parametric scripts and modeling techniques to develop and optimize the exterior shell of the Hangzhou stadium. The steel shell and concrete bowl systems were coordinated and linked for stability and optimized steel use. Because the model was parametric, design changes could be made with an extremely short turnaround, eliminating the “build-test-discard” method common in traditional modeling.

The parametric model was used as the basis for cross-disciplinary collaboration with engineers and material consultants. The engineers and consultants could use the design team’s output directly for performing their specialized design and analysis operations. The close communication between disciplines enabled the design team to ensure quality control and also find opportunities for further optimization.

The end result? We achieved a 67% steel savings over similar arenas like the famed Bird’s Nest, the Beijing National Stadium.

Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design
Computational Design

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