China impresses on many levels but we’re only interested in the architecture and design. So we’ve decided to focus on a building or actually a portion of a building that is set to open very soon. It can be found in Shenzhen and it’s OMA’s new Stock Exchange. It doesn’t resemble the one on Wall Street at all. In fact, it’s quite unusual and unique.
The building has a very daring design and structure. It’s an 820 foot tower and it has one of the largest architectural cantilevers that have been ever built. The building had to stand out because it needed to be a symbol. Since the stock market these days is mostly virtual, this space will mostly be used for commercial offices. The design of the tower can be interpreted in many different ways. OMA sees the floating base as a representation of financial risk while the rest of the tower is the long spine of commercial real estate. But you could also understand why the structured is called by the locals “the miniskirt”.
The three-story podium is the element that impresses the most. It’s lifted 100 feet into the air and it creates a giant cantilever that covers a public plaza. The structure is anchored to the ground with a web of steel columns that connect it to the commercial tower. The tower has 46 levels. This podium also has a roof garden and just to understand how big this thing really is, imagine the roof garden being the width of two football fields.
Given the size of the structure, you can easily understand why this building is one of the biggest steel projects in China. It’s impressive and it also has an interesting symbolism and story. The nickname also helps this mega structure stand out.