Danish architects lands int. competitions in China


Founded in 1986, the Danish Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects, one of Scandinavia’s foremost architectural practices known for their award winning work in cultural and public projects, have recently won several international competitions for projects in China and continue to appointed for prestigious projects in there.

Connecting to its 25th anniversary, the international architects firm started expanding activities in Asia by establishing an independent office in Shanghai, China, which opened in September 2011.

architecture, and we look forward to increasing the people-to-people contacts and the cultural exchange.”

“At schmidt hammer lassen architects, we have the ambition to create world class sustainable architecture, and we are excited that existing and new collaborators share this ambition,” said Associate Partner, Mr Chris Hardie, who is located in the Shanghai office.


schmidt hammer lassen architects already has more than 10 built projects in mainland China ranging from cultural buildings, housing and large sustainable masterplans. The studio has built a reputation for bringing a strong Scandinavian design approach to large complex public projects in China.

More than 50% of the company turnover comes from international projects – a percentage that is expected to increase in the coming years.

The recent added projects in China are as follows.

Mixed-use cultural project in Shanghai, China
Schmidt hammer lassen architects won the international competition design a new cultural home for the city of Shanghai, China. The project known as the West Shanghai Workers’ Cultural Palace, has been a popular destination for the city’s Labour Union workers and local community since the 1950s. The Danish architects’ new proposal will provide multiple cultural facilities including a theatre, cinema, art and exhibition spaces, as well as office, sports facilities, commercial space, and a major transport hub all within a new 8 hectare public park.


schmidt hammer lassen architects’ scheme preserves and expands an existing park on the site. The design expands and transforms the park into an inviting 6-hectare public space around a central lake. Four multi-functional towers are placed along the lakeside sitting on an interlinked plinth of cultural functions.

“This project is all about people” explains Chris Hardie, partner at schmidt hammer lassen. “At the beginning of the project we spent a lot of time on the existing site observing how the community and public used the park spaces around the lake. It became obvious how loved this amenity within the heart of the city was. At the same time we realised there wasn’t another large-scale park in the area – the nearest being 5 km away. From this point onwards our focus became how to maximise the amount of open public park from 1 hectare to around 6 hectares on an overall 8-hectare site – whilst creating a new cultural destination of over 80,000m2. Our proposal deals with this whilst proposing a series of covered and open spaces at street and park level.”


World’s largest waste-to-energy plant in Shenzhen, China
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects also won an international competition, together with Gottlieb Paludan Architects, to design the world’s largest waste-to-energy plant in Shenzhen, China.

An expert in designing for infrastructure and technical facilities, the Copenhagen-based Gottlieb Paludan Architects studio has been active in Northern Europe and Scandinavia for more than a century.

Located on the mountainous outskirts of Shenzhen the new Shenzhen East Waste-to-Energy Plant will incinerate 5,000 tonnes of waste per day – equalling one third of the waste generated by Shenzhen’s 20 million inhabitants every year. The plant will utilize the most advanced technology in waste incineration and power generation, whilst at the same time act as a source of education for the citizens of Shenzhen.

The winning design organizes the entire plant, including auxiliary buildings, into one circular building – breaking with the traditional rectangular layout of industrial facilities. By proposing a clear circular form, the footprint of the plant is minimised and it reduces the amount of excavation required to build on the site.


Public visitors are invited into the plant through a landscaped park, via an entrance bridge that rises between the stacks to an entrance lobby and visitor centre overlooking the plant machinery. An internal circular path and walkway circle the plant explaining each process, before leading up to a 1.5km panoramic public walkway on the roof overlooking the surrounding landscape and the city of Shenzhen.

The 66,000m2 roof is designed to be covered by up to 44,000m2 of photovoltaic panels providing the opportunity for the plant to not only provide a cleaner way to deal with the city’s waste but also contribute to the renewable energy provision for the city.

The plant is intended to showcase the Waste-to-Energy production as an important technical process that is geared to deal with the issues of growing waste, as well as the issue of finding more environmentally friendly ways of generating electricity. At the same time visitors become informed on the challenge of the growing amounts of waste we produce every day and are also educated on initiatives on how to reduce their own amount of daily waste.

Clubhouse and gallery in the mountainous district of GaoYao
Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects has also broken ground on a clubhouse and gallery in the mountainous district of GaoYao, 100 kilometres West of Guangzhou. The project (expected to be completed in early 2017) sits in the centre of a lake and will act as a pavilion for a new development of exclusive villas at the base of the nearby mountain. The design focuses on space, light, view and programme. The sculptural project was designed in collaboration with a Feng Shui Master to respect angles of approach and its location on the site.

The concept for the design derives from the project’s position at the heart of the site and is intended to enhance the views of the surrounding mountains, sky and water. Three distinct spaces come together under one unifying roof each with open panoramas across the water to the lush green landscape in all directions. Its sculptural presence and qualities are marked by a calligraphically simple gesture.

Internally the space is completely column free with all structure concealed within the external walls and glazed panoramic windows.

The teaching of Fengshui organises the orientation of the building in the optimal angles for entrances at 120, 240 and 345 degrees, which is supporting the twists of views and dynamics of the plan.


Additional projects
There are additional major projects currently being designed by schmidt hammer lassen architects in China. In Shanghai, the studio is working together with the Dream Center client developing 3 landmark culture buildings in the West Bund area, a new 25,000m2 district Performance Arts Centre in the same area, and a headquarter development for the Shanghai Development Bank at the former Expo site.

Last year, schmidt hammer lassen architects’ 30,000m2 New Library in Ningbo broke ground. In 2016, the studio’s 123,000m2 headquarter design for Ningbo Daily Newspaper Group and 100,000m2 multi-functional cultural facility Ningbo Home of Staff will also be completed.


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