Benoy is excited to celebrate the launch of Suzhou Center as CapitaMalls Asia (CMA). Also, Suzhou Industrial Park Jinji Lake Urban Development (Jinji Lake Urban Development) has unveiled its brand this month. Benoy is the architect and interior designer behind the development’s major retail component, featuring the world’s largest monocoque roof structure.
Benoy Director Winnie Tsang commented, “Benoy is extremely excited to be working on a scheme of such significance as Suzhou Center. The design has pushed many boundaries and will no doubt be a leading international example of architectural innovation.”
Suzhou Center is a large-scale, high-end integrated development in the heart of the western CBD of Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP). Planned on a 39.52 acre site along the bank of Jinji Lake, the scheme comprises retail, commercial offices, residential and a hotel, as well as entertainment and cultural spaces. Considered the world’s largest, a free-form, monocoque roof structure, spanning over 36,000 square meters, it will cover the retail making Suzhou Center the city’s most iconic future development.
“Benoy’s design for the roof was inspired by the mythical Chinese phoenix,” explained Tsang.
“We envisaged the structure as a bird resting above an oasis with the striking curved architecture mimicking its wings. To turn this concept into a viable and deliverable structure has taken an unwavering commitment by our team. It is incredibly rewarding to see us making history as we go.”
The seven-story retail and entertainment podium will have a GFA of 340,000 square meters and spread across three interconnected buildings. Alongside luxury and high-street retailers, children’s attractions, designer studios and a gourmet supermarket, there will also be an IMAX Cineplex and an Olympic-size ice rink.
Another prominent feature in Benoy’s design is ‘Water’—inspired by the neighboring Jinji Lake scenery. Landscaped bridges extend from the retail development to the lakefront to capitalize on the proximity to the natural site. Terraces overlooking the water have created additional civic spaces within the retail podium. A cascading ‘Water curtain,’ spanning 50 meters, pays homage to the local environment.
With its integrated traffic network and seamless transport accessibility to Suzhou’s MRT network, the development will serve a catchment of 13 million Greater Suzhou residents and over 8 million tourists to the SIP annually. Four modern Grade A office towers, two world-class luxury serviced apartment towers and the W Suzhou hotel tower complete the mix for the city’s most prominent future landmark to date.
Suzhou Center is due to be completed in 2017. The development joins Benoy’s portfolio in the city which also includes the future Suzhou International Finance Square.
- Developer: Jinji Lake Urban Development Co.,Ltd , CapitaMalls Asia
- Location: Suzhou, China
- Size (Mixed-Use GFA): 1,130,000 square meters
- Size (Retail GFA): 340,000 square meters
- Retail Architect: Benoy
- Retail Interior Design: Benoy
- Concept Design for Commercial Street: Benoy
- Office Interior Design: Gensler
- Tower Architect: NIKKEN SEKKEI
- Hotel Interior Design: Rockwell Group
- Structure, E&M: ARUP, NIKKEN SEKKEI