Sina Plaza is the principal office in China for Sina Corporation, a NASDAQ-listed company that operates Sina.com and Weibo. The project has above-ground and below-ground gross floor areas of 76,500 square metres and 48,000 square metres, respectively. It houses approximately 55,000 square metres of open office/R&D space; conference and meeting areas; exhibition area; and staff amenity areas, which include entertainment and leisure facilities, canteens and a supermarket. Located in Zhongguancun Science Park, a technology hub in the northwestern part of Beijing, the area is well connected by public transport and is planned to be of low density.
The core concept of the design intended to embody the notion of being limitless as advances in media technology and information have opened up unlimited opportunities in the digital world. The building was designed to reflect the infinity symbol to express the limitless concept, which is also manifested in the internal circulation route that allows users to move efficiently from one end of the building to the other. The objective of the architectural planning is to ensure maximum flexibility based on a modular approach that allows for reshaping and adjustments in the future.
Vertical circulations and servicing cores are located at the four corners of the building and connected by the central atrium, where the main entrance is. This atrium space serves as the main vertical circulation hub connecting all levels within the building with stairs, escalators and lifts, and features a 12-metre high conical media screen, which displays current media information by Sina.com and Weibo.
Drawing from the Chinese architectural heritage of courtyards, the building frames two major open courtyard gardens that bring natural light and cross ventilation to the interiors. Although the architectural form is rectilinear, the form still follows a special design discipline—it was squeezed, kneaded and pinched to express entrances, balconies, special double-height workspaces and skylights.
Aside from office spaces, television (TV) studios and R&D facilities that are essential for work, this headquarters building also features a series of staff amenities to ensure a healthy and efficient working environment that includes a fitness centre, shower rooms, a library, a staff canteen, self-served pantries, a clinic and baby feeding rooms.
At the ground level, the north entrance serves as the main entrance for visitors. The entrance is denoted by a massive curved canopy. Immediately adjacent to the north entrance lobby is a conference centre with meeting rooms. This level also comprises a staff fitness centre, recreation rooms and an exhibition area leading to the outdoor areas on the east and south of the building.
Specialised circular meeting rooms with conferencing facilities are located on level two, together with general office areas. Levels three to five comprise more general office areas, including staff training areas and collaboration spaces at each end of the building facing the internal courtyards. These levels also consist of open relaxation zones equipped with self-service pantries and softly furnished relaxation areas. Level six is allocated for office areas for senior management and general staff.
The first basement level houses TV studios and interview rooms along with a 200-seat auditorium, a 1,300-seat staff canteen and sunken courtyards that connect the canteen with the main atrium. Parking lots, supporting services and MEP/data centre can be found in basement level two.
Optimised building orientation is crucial to minimise solar heat gain and maximise natural ventilation. Daylight penetration, especially in the lobby and peripheral office spaces, can greatly reduce the amount of energy used for artificial lighting. The skylight also helps to light up the corridor on the top level. Double low-E glass is applied to minimise cooling energy consumption, while external shading fins are carefully used to provide effective shading to the building envelope. Targeted to be a Green and user-friendly building, this development has received a Pre-Certified LEED Platinum rating.
Location: Beijing, China
Completion Date: 2015
Site Area: 29,760 square metres
Gross Floor Area: 124,500 square metres
Building Height: 27.6 metres
Clients/Owners: R&F Properties; Sina Technology (China) Co., Ltd.
Architecture Firm: Aedas
Director: Ken Wai MEP
Consultant: J. Roger Preston Limited
Curtain Wall Consultant: Jangho Group Co., Ltd.
Landscape Designer: ACLA Ltd.
Interior Designers: Aedas Interiors; HASSELL; AB Concept
Lighting Consultant: Brandston Partnership Inc.
Signage Designer: Fabio Ongarato
Design Images/Photos: Aedas