The Idea Factory took the more environmentally conscious approach to renovate the building rather than rebuild. The construction is part of a rejuvenation project designed to create a cultural and creative hub within the village of Nantou, Shenzhen.
The project was created in collaboration with Urban Research Institute of Vanke, vaLue Design, and the Shenzhen Bowan Architecture Design Institute on behalf of the Shenzhen Nanshan District Bureau of Public Works and Shenzhen Vanke Development.
The building is designed for public use with offices for rent through all six-storeys. As an urban village situated close to Shenzhen, Nantou has been dwarfed by the many skyscrapers that surround it. This is the largest of the intended renovations that China Vanke and has requested in order to make Nantou realise its full potential as a hive of culture and creativity.
By utilising the existing building, they will have significantly lower CO₂ emissions than a new building. The durability of the original concrete structure is able to support the additional floor, extend the façade and allow for open loggias around the building. This in turn allows for greater circulation
Reflecting the aesthetic of Shenzhen’s urbanisation, the public staircase is adorned with bright neon signs and mirrors. The staircase cuts a path through the building, appearing as a tube-like structure which is clad in wood.
In stark contrast to the lively staircase, the bamboo of the roof creates a shady space for social interaction and leisurely pursuits, ideal for the local population of an area which has historically been disadvantaged.
The rooftop contains a series of roomlike areas which are separated using living bamboo walls allowing for anyone to make great use out of the space. The living walls help create biodiversity which is more sustainable. Each of the rooms focuses upon a different activity including gyms, swings, a tea house, and even a chess set.