China Merchants Tower & Woods Park

China Merchants Tower anchors the master plan for Woods Park, located in the Nanshan District of Shenzhen, China. The tower rises from a 15-hectare site and provides 103,000 square meters of new office and retail space.

A bowed and tapered form increases the building’s aspect ratio and allows lower floors to slope away from the sun, decreasing the solar radiation that strikes the exterior wall. The shape also allows for the distribution of exterior notches that support balconies, giving tenants access to the outdoors on each level. Inside, the notches define 16 corner offices per floor — double the number that would be possible in a traditional rectilinear tower.

The building features a low-E, unitized glass curtain wall that is clad in a system of horizontal glass fins and vertical aluminum struts. The fins have been closely spaced together to reduce solar gain. Aesthetically, the fins give the facade a fine-grain texture and balance the slenderness generated by the tower’s verticality. They also refract light at night and work in conjunction with the top of the tower — its signature element — to illuminate the form, making the building read as a beacon across Shenzhen.