OMA designs Tencent Beijing Headquarters as a small vertical city

A floating glass volume punctuated with geometric insets and imposing prism-like cutouts shape the new headquarters for the digital workforce of Tencent in Beijing.

by Zohra Khan Published on : Sep 25, 2020

OMA reveals the new headquarters for Chinese tech giant Tencent in Beijing, conceived as a square shaped floating volume that offers a surprising contrast to the common skyscraper typology of the city. Located at the edge of Zhonguancun Software Park, north of Central Beijing, the building can accommodate thousands of employees and visitors in its seven-storey complex.

Tencent Beijing Headquarters located at the edge of Zhonguancun Software Park in Central Beijing | OMA | STIRworld
Tencent Beijing Headquarters located at the edge of Zhonguancun Software Park in Central Beijing Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA

The Netherlands-based architectural firm designed the Tencent Beijing Headquarters as a 'city' in a singular building. “The campus allows for unique manipulations not possible within the limits of typical traditional offices and neither effective in a dispersed urban setting,” mention the architects.

The building as seen from the street | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
The building as seen from the street Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA

 Spanning 180 metres in length and width, this city is divided into nine quadrants, each with its own core that functions independently. On the outside, pathways interspersed with green lawns connect the quadrants while on the inside a web of streets facilitates this link.

A closer view of the facade | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
A closer view of the facade Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA

The interiors of the building, which has not been photographed as yet, has been designed by OMA in collaboration with Australian firm Woods Bagot. Each floor encapsulates a layer of hierarchy where spaces are distinctly organised and programmed under functions of work, education, and play.

Entrance to the building | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
Entrance to the building Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA

To ensure that the dense volume receives ample daylight and ventilation into the interiors, three triangular prism-shaped openings are cut through the centre of the campus. At the edge of the building, the floor plate steps down to give form to a sunken ring that doubles as an informal public space.

  • Prism-shaped openings let natural light and ventilation into the building  | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
    Prism-shaped openings let natural light and ventilation into the building Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA
  • Details of the ornamental facade | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
    Details of the ornamental facade Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA
  • Landscape at the roof level | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
    Landscape at the roof level Image: © Ossip van Duivenbode, Courtesy of OMA

At the roof level, the top floor is receded from the building’s edge to give shape to an expansive green space that overlooks the panoramic views of the city.

Programmatic diagram | Tencent Beijing Headquarters | OMA | STIRworld
Programmatic diagram Image: Courtesy of OMA

As per the architects, to offset the inertness of the square volume, the corners of the building are chopped off to define imposing entrances into the complex. On the rest of the façade, geometric insets punctuate the glass façade that reveal a sharp, sculpturesque form that stands out in the Beijing skyline.

The project is one of the many works of the Dutch firm from China which includes Prince Plaza in Shenzhen, CCTV Headquarters in Beijing, and the upcoming CMG Qianhai Headquarters in Shenzhen.

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