The architects von Gerkan, Marg and Partners (gmp) have been commissioned with the design of a new urban development project on a 45 hectare site in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen. It comprises a transportation hub including five underground railway stations, a border control point and numerous commercial areas. Above ground there will be a range of tower blocks of different heights with apartments, shops and offices to form multi-functional city quarters.
The new “Qianhai Integrated Transportation Hub” will be intersected by major north-south and east-west transport axes. The development will feature a variety of urban spaces and a structure with a diverse range of buildings. The tower blocks – with heights ranging between 200 and 280 metres, including one landmark building of 450 metres – form an impressive skyline, and will give this area between the coast and the centre of Shenzhen an unmistakable character. While the traffic above ground will consist of bus and taxi transport, as well as pedestrian routes, the major function of the transport hub will be below ground – combining underground lines and local and regional train stations – linking Shenzhen with its neighbouring cities.
The site is located in the centre of the new urban development area at Qianhai Bay to the east of Shenzhen. It is part of the new special economic area which is being planned by China in the Pearl River Delta. The intention is to create a new type of finance centre that is directly connected to Hong Kong and benefits from special financial and tax rights for trade in Chinese currency. In the longer term, the new special economic zone will be part of an incomparably large metropolis linking the already extremely dense agglomeration of Hong Kong/Shenzhen/Guangzhou to form one continuous conurbation.