SDA | Synthesis Design + Architecture’s design concept for Xiamen Dream City in China challenges the conventional notion of the city waterfront. This monumental artificial landscape facilitates 300,000 square meters of programs. Almost continuous contour line of natural topography of the complex is activated by careful placement of the main programmatic elements. The result of this strategic arrangement is pleasantly chaotic – endless play of surfaces generates undulating dunes, canyons and valleys. Dynamic effect of cascading openings creates articulated network of continuously connected spaces. Final line of the waterfront is a joined venture of view vectors, programmatic forces and pedestrian circulation.
Due to the selection of materials of the envelope and its seamless transition between the ground, the facade and the roof of the complex, the enormous structure is perfectly embedded within the context as it seems to be emerging from the beach itself.
Contents of the low-rise buildings are revealed beneath the surface, therefore conserving precious ground level for a gradient network of public plazas, linear gardens and pathways. Below rests a vast, underground, multi-level concourse, facilitating numerous entertainment venues, luxury retail and dining, lit by sculptural north-facing glass surfaces on the roof, providing diffuse, north skylight.
Parametric design of the mixed-use, spiral, rising towers ensures optimized sunlight exposure accompanied by ideal natural ventilation. Their orientation is guided by avoiding the direction of the prevailing winds on the beach site. Unexpectedly regular, pattern of the facade encourages interpolation of green surfaces, as a more elegant response to the emerging trend of window farming.