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Upriver Business Park

Shanghai, China

Short information

Building category
Living, People and Architecture
Windows, Doors, Sliding systems
AWS 65
Shanghai, China
GNA Architekten
Shanghai Suncare D&W. Co. LTD


Project details

Project description

The elegant residential and business district in Shanghai created for Shanghai Meizhu Industrial Co., Ltd. consists solely of German architectural imports. The planning of the 500 business villas in several construction stages and the master plan were carried out by Dusseldorf-based GNA Grimbacher Nogales architects. The impressive, high-quality interior design and landscape architecture were also imported from Germany – Design quality “made in Germany”.

New business quarter in Shanghai

Of the many new districts in the region, the Upriver Business Park Shanghai project carried out by the German GNA Grimbacher Nogales architectural office has a special position. The business park, which is just southeast of Pudong International Airport and northwest of Yanshan Deepwater Port, extends over an area of 340,000 m2 in the Nanhui District between Shanghai, Lingang New City, an area for 800,000 inhabitants planned by gmp architects, and the East China Sea Bridge.

Due to its prominent, easy-to-reach location and large amount of green areas (more than 35 %), Upriver Business Park is an excellent site for small and medium-sized research and development businesses and a desirable residential area for middle and high management employees. South of the area, a green belt with tennis courts and other sports grounds, as well as a riverside terrace, extends along the banks of the Da Zhi River. To the north, the park borders on Si Zao Port, and to the east a canal connects the river with the harbor.

From landscape planning to interior designconcepts

GNA Grimbacher Nogales architects planned a total of 500 business villas with living space ranging from 300 to 385 m2, 200 m2 of usable area in the basements, and a 350 to 400 m2 courtyard, for the investor, Shanghai Meizhu Industrial Co., Ltd., a metal construction company and license holder of Schüco windows in China, with whom the architects fi rst came into contact at the BAU 2005 trade fair.

After talking with three planning offi ces, Shanghai Meizhu Industrial Co., chose GNA Grimbacher Nogales because they were impressed by the architects’ conceptual approach of combining residential and work spaces in one building, and by the Dusseldorf architects’ modern vocabulary of form. And since German quality is highly esteemed in the Far East, both the landscape planning (FSWLA Landschaftsarchitektur, Dusseldorf) and the interior design (Studio Architects, Dusseldorf) also were from Germany. In addition to the building types commissioned for the first construction stage – two differing villas and a clubhouse – GNA architects also developed two further building types and carried out the master planning. Five additional building types will be realized in the second stage. Furthermore, a Schüco production site with a manufacturing center and a showroom will be completed by 2011. The facility – consisting entirely of Schüco products – will be the largest and most advanced Schüco production unit in China.

The main challenge that had to be over come in the master planning was to orientate all living and sleeping areas to the south. The team of architects and landscape planners cleverly obviated the danger of monotony by adding squares and broadening streets, and by including water basins and canals. Due to the attentive treatment of the public space – usually neglected in China – the residents identify with their quarter.

High-quality materials and surfaces

To organize the densely structured area, which has a total of 200,000 m2 gross fl oor area, and at the same time to create important retreat areas for the target group, Grimbacher Nogales architects grouped four to five villas into small blocks. Together with FSWLA Landscape Architecture, they created various visual links to the surrounding green areas and water surfaces: they built wooden planked footbridges and terraces; they established gardens; planted trees, shrubs and bamboo bushes; and to create privacy, developed horizontal, interrupted, semitransparent walls that look like Venetian blinds from a distance.

Apart from the height of the rooms – 3.2 m on the ground and first fl oors, and 2.8 m in the basement – the spatial experience is infl uenced by the fl oor-toceiling windows, which open as sliding doors on the same level as the terrace and balconies. The interplay between interior and exterior is an integral part of the design concept. The materials used highlight the value of the villas. While aluminium, glass, and travertine dominate the exterior, the interior walls are largely plastered or clad in wood. Walnut wood, deep-pile carpets, and travertine were used as flooring.

Luxurious furnishings

The clubhouse serves as the entrance and reception building. The large glazed structure with a fl ying roof projecting far out towards the water houses a “European” restaurant encompassing 15,000 m2 on the ground fl oor, as well as a café and a luxurious lobby with shops. There is a Chinese restaurant on the first floor. The second fl oor contains high-quality business spaces as well as a wellness and spa area, and the third fl oor has offi ce and conference rooms plus a conference hall accommodating 200 people. The clubhouse built in the second construction stage completes the accommodation with a sauna and a heated swimming pool.

The first stage – realized in 2007 – was recently completed. 140 villas are currently being marketed. To this end, GNA architects built a sales pavilion where potential buyers can obtain information about the project via a 1:1 mock-up façade, 1:50 models of the different building types, and a model of the entire facility. In addition, two prototype buildings were completely furnished. The business villas will be sold as high-quality shell constructions with suspended ceilings, enabling the final form to be created based on the wishes and requirements of the respective buyer. Moreover, full air conditioning is possible in addition to single-room air conditioning.

Schüco façades, windows, and door system solutions

A number of Upriver Business Park’s window and façade solutions were achieved using Schüco systems. In addition to the Schüco mullion-transom façade system FW 60, Schüco systems were used for all of the large-scale project’s windows and door openings, as well as sliding elements and corner windows. Products from the window and door series Schüco Royal S (Royal S 120 sliding door system) were used as well as the new window and door system AWS 60.