North Design Union Headquarters office, Tianjin
LOCATION: Tianjin, China
SIZE: 20 000m2
STATUS: Competition, Shortlisted
CREDITS: Nemanja Kordić, Nikola Stevanovic, Petar Smiljanić with ATI PROJECT
ABOUT: The new NDU HQ is conceived to become an urban junction in the Hexi district aiming to connect the scattered buildings of the district to the Tianjin Urban park along the river in the north and the possible green linear park in the south axis. To achieve that the western part of the site is preserved as an open space that becomes a park/plaza adjacent to the building. As an urban suggestion, a landscaped passarelle is proposed to connect the NDU site with the two blocks in the west and southwest. The building itself tends to become a logical extension and a part of the proposed green corridor by setting a small footprint on its ground level that provides a covered public space and by offering a landscaped green roof/park accessible for its users and occasionally for the public.
Aiming to achieve the optimal orientation within the urban context a cascaded volumetric strategy is being used to:
-Diversify the office spaces typologies within
-Minimize the building footprint
-Achieve the best vistas towards the west, east and south
-And to achieve the optimal sun protection towards the south
Typologically the building does not belong either within a tower or a courtyard typology although it contains the elements of both. The given parameters and the proportions of the site enabled a cascaded interior landscape configuration
through two intertwined entities where businesses could grow and expand:
- NDU OFFICE Park - an open office area conceived as a cascading interior landscape/ideal for freelancers and incubating startups
- surrounding office based on the co-working principles/startups and small companies
The first - NDU OFFICE PARK tends to reinvent the decaying concept of the open office by keeping its primary values of exchange, transparency, and communication but solving the problems of lack of privacy, concentration, and productivity. This is achieved by introducing a concept of a floating workplace, so each user (individual or a company) can book the desired type of spot and the necessary facilities needed for his work within the proposed gradient of working unit typologies. The proposed units are offering different degrees of privacy and different equipment such as modular enclosed office pod, cross - cubicle, meeting room, workshop bubble. The proposed unit typology may be a starting point but the system itself is meant to be a self-correcting one allowing different and new DIY arrangements densifications and expansion. The latter could be achieved through occupying the interstitials space between the roof and the cascaded interior landscape by using the roofs of the office pod to get extra space.
The second - a coworking area where small and medium companies could find their place if they have overgrown the open office phase but still maintain the connection to the creative hive in the NDU park by sustaining the visual connections and sharing the facilities within the building.
Sharing happens on two levels: first - towards the public and visitors (roof park and the street level facilities such as the gallery, cantine/restaurant and a gymnasium), second within the building itself (meeting rooms, AV rooms, lecture hall, facilities, sanitary zones,). The floating workplace concept enables both individuals and companies to efficiently use the facilities of the HQ through the booking based space management software.