Wukesong Indoor Stadium
The fully glazed façade of the Wukesong Indoor Stadium, venue for the Beijing Olympics basketball tournaments, has a sense of transparency and achieves a grace that will make it the distinctive, high-profile architecture it was originally envisioned to be.
The conceptual design of Wukesong Indoor Stadium was awarded in an international competition to Swiss architecture firm Burckhardt + Partner, which proposed the renowned “world s largest television”. The winning design called for a strong, cubic form that would be covered on all four sides, from the ground up, in massive LCD screens—the idea was that games played inside would be available for public viewing outside.
However, due to concerns of extravagance and over-spending (not to mention the potential light pollution), the screens were stripped off the building after the Chinese government called for a reevaluation of some Olympic designs. The building also lost much of its commercial space to reduce the overall floor area.
Local architects then carried out a redesign of Wukesong Indoor Stadium, cladding the still-cubic structure in white glass to create an elegant and simple form. In keeping with environmentally sensitive design, the glazing is all low-emission glass. To maintain the purity of the façade, the architects will install the glazed curtain wall with hidden aluminium alloy frames. Fin-like glass sunshades shield the building from the afternoon sun and add dynamism to the building s facade. Illuminated at night, the building will become a striking light sculpture visible from afar.
The architects introduced natural ventilation by installing vents at the bottom of the curtain wall, in the eaves and on the roof, using software to maximise the effectiveness of the outdoor air coming in. Other environmental strategies include installing solar panels to power LED nightlighting. Sanitary facilities are fitted with water sensors; tanks on the northeast and southwest will store rainwater for landscaping; and intelligent controlling and rainfall sensor systems are used for irrigation.
Sophisticated technology is also used, fitting into one of the government s ambitions for Olympic architecture—that it be high-tech. Ten score screens including an eight-way monitor are installed to meet U.S. National Basketball Association (NBA) criteria, giving audiences quick access to information on the matches.
The 18,000-seat stadium is the cornerstone to the Wukesong Culture and Sports Centre—a 50-hectare site that includes the Wukesong Baseball Field and a large sports park. The centre is expected to provide residents in western Beijing with a place where they can exercise, relax and socialise.
Contributed by ArchiTeam
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