Guangzhou Children’s Activity Center

Guangzhou, China,

From the public courtyard out front to state-of-the-art theaters and classrooms within, Guangzhou Children’s Activity Center has become a hub of education, enlightenment and entertainment. This stunning new facility provides teaching, performance and exhibition space for after-school and weekend arts-education courses for primary- ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCAPACITY20,000COST PER SQ FT$86.00FEATURED IN2007 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSpecialized secondary-school students.

Envisioned as a “place for discovery,” the building is based on an innovative tripartite design symbolizing the integration of art, learning and technology: a rectangular building of classrooms is at the rear (learning), with a curving mass of meeting and exhibition spaces in front (art), and central glass entry tower linking the two (technology and discovery).

A smooth, dramatic and seamless compound curving exterior was made possible through the use of a mesh metal panel system without visible joints. Large, colorful, egg-shaped atria in the rectangular building and the dramatic glass entry tower serve to circulate air and people throughout the facility and add an organized element to the computer-inspired exterior look.

Site orientation and green spaces maximize sustainability by capitalizing on shading, daylight and winds. An outdoor plaza continues beneath the building, which is set on one story of columns, to retain open circulation at street level and invite pedestrians to enjoy the natural surroundings.