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The Central Building of Beijing City University New Campus

As the most important and successful private university in China, Beijing City University is at its turning point of reinventing itself. The new central building will fulfill the role of social condenser and energizer at its new expanded campus north of Beijing.

The complex and rich programs are re-organized and reinterpreted into five unique parallel bars sitting on a horizontal plate below grade. The west two wings are for the library with its reading spaces facing the park, and the east two wings are for the art center with its performing art spaces to bracket an outdoor plaza with the large gym to the east, while the center building houses the admin, and entries for the conference and media center which is mostly in the lower horizontal plate. The spaces between these five wings are the most exciting realm of the center building, interconnected bridges flying over a sheet of water. The Zen-like space on the ground creates a poetic space for reflection, while the connecting bridges above encourage the social interaction and interdisciplinary exchanges.

The new building is centered on the existing central axis, to respect the history of the campus, by enclosing the central courtyard at the south end. This building returns the focus on the people, with the hope to organize and augment a more healthy, open and socially dynamic campus life. Furthermore, it establishes a new relation to nature, extending the natural resources to the west across the entire south face of the university, to create an educational Eden against the harsh and rapid urbanization around it.

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