Galleria-Instreet overhauls a neglected district in central Beijing. The extensive urban renewal strategy has transformed an underused, sparse space through large and small interventions. The result is a hybridised public space prototype, which sets a benchmark for public space design in China.
There are landmarks on the site, such as the main entrance to Phoenix Mall and Sanyuanqiao subway station, but there is also a redundant concrete bridge, lack of visual unity, and disparate and unconnected elements. The absence of public seating also made the street lose its non-human scale. Therefore, the project features lifestyle elements aimed squarely at communities, including commercial, residential, and open pedestrian networks, with kids’ play areas, a network of canopies, public seating and flexible spaces for various uses.
The first design strategy to renew this project was to demolish the concrete bridge. The demolition presented multiple opportunities for design interventions. First, it opened up the space significantly, highlighting the street’s distinct lack of character. A relandscaping of the area saw the introduction of instruments to encourage public interaction. The focal point, a network of canopies running the length of the street, provides shelters to the pedestrians. At night, the covers provide atmospheric shade for various activities, such as the children’s play area, green planters and plentiful benches. Create a versatile open-air platform for events of all kinds.
Minor interventions also play a part in the transformation, such as an intricate rain collection system and custom-made steel tree root guard-meshes elements. The visual appearance of the existing commercial tenants has been transformed thematically and linked by extended terraces—with planters and wooden decks, combined with rough stone elements and other trees—all make for a pocket of nature and urban, open space in the heart of the city.
This is an excerpt. The original article is published in Construction+ Hong Kong Issue 25: Low-Carbon Urban Development. Get the print magazine or subscribe to the digital edition to read the complete article.
Beijing CR Land Galleria Shopping Centre – Instreet Renovation
Chaoyang District, Beijing, China
12,000 square metres
Andrea Destefanis & Filippo Gabbiani
Architecture Design Manager
China Academy of Building Research
Landscape Design Development
Unlimited Metropolis Design
Beijing Pro Lighting Design Co., Ltd.
Curtain Wall Consultant
Beijing Jingtonghua Curtain Wall Consulting Co., Ltd
Graphia International Limited