Fashion – MAD Architects reveal the Design Center for Xinhee International Fashion Group and its six subsidiary brands in the Chinese coastal city of Xiamen. The six petal flower-shaped project is organized around a central atrium with six long spanning structures extending out from the central core. A glazed PTFE dress floats free draping over the solid structural frame.
“We envision it as a building with skin-and-bones” says MAD founding principal Ma Yansong to ArchiPanic. “The correspondence of clothing and architecture is they both explore the relationship between the interior and the exterior”.
Xinhee headquaters building combines office spaces and green gardens on within each of the organically-formed ‘petals’. A translucent and sun-shading envelope of PTFE hangs slightly off the vertical garden, and provides ventilation during the hot season.
As an innovative and creative office, the spatial organisation mimics six petals, growing from a central point. Each of the six brands have their own individual office and research space, yet can freely interact and communicate between departments. “Unlike traditional corporate ‘boxes’, a radial layout enables the office space to be highly efficient and flexible, while at the same time provide natural light, ventilation, and vista”.
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The atrium acts as public space that is open to staff and visitors. A footbridge providing air circulation doubles also as a catwalk for occasional fashion shows. Two glass elevators visually connect the office on different levels.
The connection between interior and exterior space extends the design centre’s public interaction from inside office space to the outside gardens, and provides a relaxed atmosphere and working environment. The design centre is a highly efficient green building and adapts to the local climate. The void and lifted structure on the first floor reduces the footprint by two-third. The first floor mainly consists of garden and water features, which are open to the public.
Both the atrium and the lifted structure enable ventilation throughout the building. The summer months deliver cool air to each level. In the winter months, the atrium transforms into a sun-filled greenhouse below the glass-enclosed roof.
The stacked gardens create a 100% green ratio. To lower solar radiation and provide natural lighting to the office, a translucent coating is applied to the building’s façade which permits 40% light transmittance.
Images: courtesy of MAD Architects