Winner of an international design competition, KK100 held the title of tallest building in Shenzhen from 2011 to 2016 and remains the tallest tower ever realised by a British architecture firm. It forms the centrepiece of an innovative high-density, eight-tower development that took a uniquely community-minded approach to urban regeneration.
The 3.6-hectare site was previously home to Caiwuwei Village, a dense cluster of tall, tightly-packed village houses that loomed over tiny alleyways and restricted access to sunlight and fresh air. Inadequate municipal servicing contributed to urban decline. The developer began by embracing the villagers as partners, forming with them a joint development company. Village homes were reprovisioned in the form of spacious new flats overlooking Lizhi Park and the verdant common space and swimming pool at podium level. Additional apartment buildings provided the villagers with second flats, ensuring their financial security through a steady source of rental income. The arrangement was a win-win for both the developer and the villagers.
The 100-storey, 441.8-metre tower is a mixed-use complex containing grade-A office space, a six-star hotel, trading areas, conference and business facilities and a fitness centre. While the top of most skyscrapers is occupied by machinery, KK100 is instead topped by a cathedral-like glass-and-steel structure home to a sky garden housing numerous dining options.
Emphasis on sustainability was intrinsic to the tower’s design. Major green proposals included an environmentally friendly built form and envelope design; energy-saving building services, a free-cooling system; a direct connection to a metro station; and advanced building energy and environmental simulations.