"The movement of water and fish can be seen as origin of the initial idea," said Project Architect Zhenyuan Yang. "The fish jumping gesture should symbolise the prosperity and rapid transformation of the city."
The tower's curving form will be clad with 1,400 bent panels made from perforated aluminium which give the structure its scaly appearance. The sinuous construction consists of 12 two-dimensional curves generated by parametric modelling software. The panels create a sun-shading device which projects light patterns onto the interior during the day and as the sun sets, embedded LED lights will backlight the façade at night.
The interior of the tower will be divided into three parts: a ground podium, communal spaces in the middle and an observation facility on top. The lower levels will contain a lobby for the elevator entrance, restaurants, retail and cafes around a 2000m² public square. The middle portion of the tower will house multi-functional communal rooms with a recreational space and a media conference hall. From here, a cantilevered staircase will serve as the main means of vertical circulation as it spirals upwards around a core of trusses. At the top is a lower observation platform enclosed by glass panels as well as a higher exterior viewing balcony, which provides a 360 degree view of the surrounding river and metropolis.
The project was designed by architecture firm RMJM who took out first prize in the observation tower’s international design competition. The iconic tower will serve as a major city landmark for Doumen and will form part of a wider regeneration of its riverfront area.