Best Tall Building 100-199 meters Award of Excellence: Changsha Hua Center Phase II Project, Changsha

Andy Wen
Global Design Principal
Aedas, Hong Kong

Zhenghua Hou
Director of Product
Huayuan Real Estate, Beijing

A Storied Landscape Inspires an Ultra-Connected Complex

Situated in the vibrant heart of Changsha, the Hua Center Phase II Project—part of a larger cultural and creative multi-use complex—is in the center of the old city, close to the Xiang River. At the busy intersection of Jiefang West Road, Taiping Street and Pozi Street, the “urban life center” hosts a double ground-floor retail space, offices, film studios, and several other community amenities. The design concept for the Changsha Hua Center Complex is derived from nature and inspired by the world heritage site, Zhangjia Jie, a tourist destination in Hunan known for its landscape of sandstone pillars, caves, water canyons, an ancient village, and rugged and weathered mountain rocks.

The podium has different setbacks in each direction and features a huge glass dome on top. Brilliant yellow light sheds mimic the stalactites and stalagmites of Huanglong Cave. The towers are staggered and twisted with uneven setbacks on each story, creating plateau-like platforms for roof gardens and viewing podiums. A transparent glass skybridge connects the south and north towers and enhances occupant circulation within the complex.

The buildings’ programs are easily distinguished by individual expressions of the façade. Glazed curtain walls with aluminum panels surround the ground floor for retail, and the remaining podium adopts a curtain wall of irregularly shaped ceramic plates, with horizontal glass display windows. The tower façade is dominated by vertical lines that echo the design of the podium, with horizontal lines providing visual contrast at each setback. The unique architectural structure emphasizes its spatial connection with the city and promotes user experience through a semi-enclosed micro-environment, with natural ventilation and unobstructed daylight provided by the curved contours.

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