Jinan Grand Theater
The project is located at the axis cross of the new metro line and the Lashan River. The east–west axis extends from the new high-speed train station to the town center the north-south axis along the Lashan River. Both axes are leisure zones, composed out of public space and public gardens. The character between the two perpendicular parks is differentiated.
Central Park should be a very active place, connected mainly to the daily activities of offices and retail. Its length is such that it should be constituted of successive sequences, different in design and adapted to the different activities on their two sides or under their surface. The “Water Park” would, on the contrary, have a greater unity, essentially created by the design of a water-garden treated as a built and controlled damp area.
The variety of paths and of plants and trees conciliate the use by a large public with a natural organization of the space. The place where the two parks intersect will be of course the most symbolic one in the new town, concentrating its ambitions as a living space for “better life”. Site description The site is bordered by 3 major roads and one secondary road; in the North (East JiXi road) and South (ZhanQian road). The building complex of the Provincial Cultural& Art Center Plaza is situated in the middle of the Central Park at the gravity center of the new metro line. The geometry of the whole complex takes a reference to the center public space the Central Plaza. In the north of the project 3 towers border the building complex with their common base.
The towers will have a hotel, short-term apartments, and office functions; the base provides common services for these functions. The complexes’ south is occupied by the Grand Theatre. Each of the 3 audience halls, the Opera Hall, the Concert Hall and the Multifunctional Hall form a big “shell type” building so that a composition with the towers is formed. In the center, between the Towers and the Grand Theatre, two stories commercial center will be constructed above the metro line.
The metro station is on the east edge of the side. In the west of the Central Plaza, a large terrace can be found where public animation, restaurants, and bars profit from the river border. Building surrounded by landscape. The main concept of the site is that the building complex is surrounded by the landscape of the park. The surrounding landscape is divided into two levels, street level and Central Plaza level 5, 4 meters higher. The park deals with 3 different pedestrian levels. The 3 levels are connected regularly so that the pedestrian has a choice to go up or down during a walk in the park. A hill landscape provides sloped access, opens views to the building or partially hides the building. Bridges and walkway ensure the continuity of the walk. Especially the higher points of the landscape open extraordinary views to the building, to the lower parts of the landscape, to the river and to the areas with public activities.
Continuous high landscape hides the delivery zone of the Grand Theatre. The delivery and artists’ access is covered by a footbridge. The landscape participates at the access and security concept. All other parts integrate the movement of higher amplitude in order to lower where needed for street access, views car access and other. The Central park concentrates the qualities of the water park along the Lashan River and the green axis along the new metro line on one site. The visitors can enjoy their walk through dense tree areas, closed to the river or higher up on the bridges and upper pathways. During the walk, the visitor can experience different perspectives and situations. The composition The design divides the project in a north part and a south part. A large opening is so created on each entrance side of the Central Plaza.
The counter-curve of the two roof parts invites the visitors to enter and attract them to the center. Right in the center, a large covered passage can be found so that visitors can easily cross from the Grand Theatre to the commercial and tower side. The 2 roof parts coming close to each other in the center articulate the gravity center of the project between the towers and the Grand Theatre. It is therefore a direct expression of the Cultural and Art Centre being the center of New West Jinan, which radiates to the province of Shandong and over its borders. Cultural approach and philosophy The project is simple and complex at the same time. It is abstract and literal; it in-cooperates architectural, urbanistic, artistic and symbolic approaches. The project becomes so an ‘Entire artwork’ which can take part in a modern society where a different interpretation is possible according to different imaginations.
The Provincial Cultural & Art Centre Plaza can fulfill its outstanding position in the region. Green Mountains “Green Mountains and Blue Sea” cleverly sums up the geographical landscape and cultural history on the mountains and the sea in Shandong. It highlights the beauty of the blend of mountains and the sea, the hometown of Confucius and the culture of Shandong. The name of Green Mountain was driving from Mount Tai. Poetically it is described as towering, green intoxicating scene of Emerald Crest. Majestic Mount Tai is a symbol of Qilu culture. It represents the characteristics of Qilu people as being self-improvement, social commitment, excellent and hard-working wisdom. Blue Sea Blue Sea symbolizes the full use of the coastal location of Shandong with the meaningful aim of developing the marine economy, scientifically configuring the marine resources and creating the blue economy zone of the Shandong Peninsula.
Architects: Paul Andreu Architecte
Location: Shandong, China
Design Team: Katharina Kriener, Stephanie Boufflet, Pengzi Zhang, Riccardo Vanigli, Olivia Faury, Antoine Barbeyer, Yanfang Niu, Kasia Dudzik, Hailin Zhai, Chen Wei, Wei Dong, Guo Kun
Type: Cultural Center
Photographs: Philippe Ruault