KPF completes Beijing's tallest skyscraper - architecture and design

KPF completes Beijing's tallest skyscraper



The 528-metre-tall CITIC Tower designed by American firm Kohn Pedersen Fox is the tallest skyscraper in Beijing, the fourth-highest in China and number eight worldwide.
Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF) designed the 109-storey skyscraper, which is widely known as China Zun, to have a distinct profile on account of how visible it would be on the city's skyline.
"Imagining the city's tallest tower as a representation of its history and people, we approached the building as a public entity in our design," explained Robert Whitlock, design principal at KPF.

According to the firm, the skyscraper's shape is based on the form of a zun ? a type of bronze or ceramic ceremonial vessel that were first made in the bronze age. The tower is broader at the base and top than it is at the middle, giving it the appearance of having a tightened waist. The floors, which are square with rounded corners, are 78 metres wide at the tower's base and 69 metres wide on the top floor, while the smallest floor is only 54 metres wide.

"We abstracted the zun's elegant form and focused on its gradual transformation, applying this motif across immense scales: from the tower's overall massing, all the way down to its curtain wall, entry vestibule, and interior detailing.
"In all, we feel that CITIC Tower's graceful skyline profile, dynamic street-level presence, and transparent lobby and observation hall answer its architectural mission."
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