Shanghai Office, Horizon Design Co., Ltd.

2nd Biannual Business Week/ Architectural Record China Awards

Best historic preservation project


The new office of Horizon Design(Shanghai) Co., Ltd. is located in Yangpu District, on a site originally known as Shanghai Power Station Auxiliary Equipment Co., Ltd. It was the first and the largest GE factory in Asia. Built in 1921, this old factory served as a Japanese arsenal while Shanghai was seized by Japanese in the 1930s. With such an extraordinary background, this industrial building is now considered a great historical and architectural heritage.


The design intent for this newly acquired space was to keep the integrity and memory of the past while furnishing it with a touch of modernity both in form and function. The architect’s design focus is not on emphasizing the old architectural components, but rather on presenting the history and locality of this building.


The driving concept was to respect and respond to its original spatial configuration and historical surroundings. As the result, the repairing and cleaning of its exterior wall, roof and structure were kept to minimum for maximum preservation. In contrast, the interior work stations were constructed from scratch for maximum comfort to offset the roughness of the existing elements. The resulting space is an exciting mixture of clusters of new and old with both public and private features intertwining which echoes the streets and plazas of the city situated. This design solution intended to reflect the current state of the Shanghai city with its long history of cultural heritage mixed with modern craze.


In response to the issues of sustainability, salvaged materials such as bricks and wood planks were reused in conjunction with new materials such as glass and steel. Moreover, mechanical cooling/heating load was reduced to minimal where most of the space is naturally ventilated. In addition, new landscape elements are introduced in order to blend the new elements into the
existing environment.


The idea of double/triple programming were also deployed for maximum flexibility where for instance, the conference room and library can be easily rearranged and used as amphitheater for assemblies, lectures or performances.

Location:Yangpu area, Shanghai

No. of stories:1 above grade

Design period:2005. 7 ~ 2005. 9

Const. period:2005. 9 ~ 2005. 11

Award record: 2008 AIA N.Y. State Award of Excellence | 2008 The 2nd Business Week/Architectural Record China Award

Category: Adaptive Reuse、Office

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