H-Max City represents a new trend in multi-use projects that are emerging in China during the most recent wave of hyper-urban development. Where earlier projects in the 90’s and 00’s were primarily single use (housing, or institutional), increasingly the need for a more sophisticated mix of uses has arisen. This is driven by several factors. One is the result of consumer demand, i.e. that residents want to have the benefit of multiple sets of amenities in close proximity to each other and living spaces. Secondly, town planners are recognizing the benefit and need to mix uses on larger development sites, so that they can contribute to economic and social health of a city. And finally, developers recognize that the synergy generated by mixing uses creates not only more interesting places within the city, but more financially successful projects.
H-Max City is the result of a 12 month design collaboration between the client’s marketing, engineering, and executive branches and our team. Currently under construction, this 150,000 Square Meter project (1.5 million SF) consists of multiple uses (Shops, restaurants, teahouses, theaters, hotels, car showrooms, specialty shops, urban villas and a department store.)
The visibility of the site, in particular from the NW and SW corners was critical. Consequently major public spaces are provided to both mark these locations and invite visitors. A major pedestrian spine links the west and east portions of the site, linking park to shopping street. And finally, the west portion of the site consists of a finely grained urban fabric, with mostly three and four story buildings.Â A variety of streets, paths, parks, courtyards, balconies and roof terraces create a rich mix of spaces, enticing visitors and residents to linger and enjoy this new community.
One of the main concepts was to extend the qualities of the park-like setting along the river into the development site, integrating as man landscape features as possible. In addition, it was important to create strong pedestrian links between the park and new development, especially given the size of the boulevard. The scale of the boulevard was “tamed” by adding a tree-lined divider down’s its center.