The SourceCivil Engineering MagazineSlideshow: Continuous loop design to create landmark tower in China

Slideshow: Continuous loop design to create landmark tower in China

By Catherine A. Cardno, Ph.D.

  • looking across a green expanse at a tower in the mist that has a gradated roof and side wall system that makes it appear as if it were an endless loop
  • three-quarters aerial angle of the o-ring building
  • looking at a tower from behind, with a low rise multi-story building next to it
  • the edge of the curving building facade appears to lift to expose the glass entrance
  • an enclosed plaza is lit with turquoise light and ringed with trees
  • looking upward at an open area at the center of a tall tower
  • top-down look at the o-ring tower
  • a large white room has a sloping glass wall and expansive views
  • a large atrium with a sloping wall has an escalator descending to the floor
  • o-ring tower at night

Architecture studio Bjarke Ingels Group — based in Copenhagen, Denmark, and New York City and known as BIG — has unveiled its design for the new headquarters of Chinese smartphone company Oppo. The two-building complex will be built in the city of Hangzhou, China. Founded 17 years ago in 2004, Oppo has undergone rapid growth to become China’s largest smartphone company. The tower will also host the company’s research and development work.

The building will have two elements: a tower and a low-rise retail space. The tower will boast an oval footprint with a large central open-air plaza. The edge of this oval tower will be shaped as a twisting, rotating continuous loop, much like an infinity loop. The multistory retail space will be linked to the back of the tower and each of its stories will contain variable curved footprints and both open-air sections and enclosed storefronts. The headquarters will be located on a lake and adjacent to 10,000 sq m park but will also be sited on a major east-west road through Hangzhou.

The tower is being built in an innovation and venture development zone within the city that is known as Hangzhou Future Sci-Tech City. This is just one of the city’s development zones, and it was created to attract and develop global technology entrepreneurship. While the city is known for its innovation, it is also home to West Lake and the archaeological ruins of Liangzhu City, both of which are designated by UNESCO as World Heritage sites.

Locating the headquarters in the future science and technology development zone represents Oppo’s commitment to innovation and the pursuit of perfection, according to material BIG released about the project. The building’s striking design “expresses Oppo’s mission of the elevation of life through technological artistry, with an overarching vision of being a sustainable company that contributes to a better world,” according to the studio.

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