The complex was developed and built by the real estate branch of Guohua, a state owned power company which in turn is owned by Sen Hua, one of China's largest energy conglomerates. The site is located on Chang’an Boulevard, Beijing's primary east-west axis, which is the address for the city's primary governmental and business entities, and fronts onto great public spaces including Tiananmen Square.
The architecture of China Central Place was designed by KPF as a striking composition of diagonally faceted glass volumes whose appearance is softened at the lowest five stories by terra cotta screens. Within the site, the component buildings define two major public parks of over 2 hectares each. The phenomenon of using commercial functions to define such a public space is unique in the context of Beijing. China Central Place is one of a few projects, including the China World Trade Center and CCTV, that will establish this district as the commercial hub of the city.
KPF design partner James von Klemperer explains that "already this development has made a strong impression on the public. It gives people a sheltered environment where they can work, live, shop, and enjoy the synergies of urban life without the stresses of congestion."
The opening of this development in Beijing is one of the major additions to China's capital in preparation for the 2008 Olympics.