PLP reveals Nexus Tower, a high rise without a central core, in China’s Pearl River Delta

Architecture International Newsletter Skyscrapers Unveiled
(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

Only six years old, London-based architecture firm PLP formed as a break away from KPF. Despite its age, the firm already has some noteworthy projects under its belt including the award winning The Edge in Amsterdam. Principals David Leventhal and Andrei Martin have recently designed one more, the Nexus Tower in the Pearl River Delta in China.

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

The skyscraper comprises three stacked volumes, all of which are oriented differently upon a central axis acting as an elevator shaft. Martin is quick to say that this is not the core of the building, explaining that each volume has it’s own core, situated on its outer edge. Such a feature “challenges the central core [office] typology,” explained Martin.

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

The Nexus Tower boasts quadruple-height informal spaces, all clad in glass, so that incumbent offices can advertise (for free) to passers by how much “fun” their employees are having.

Exterior elevator shafts on each volume’s “core” also aid legibility. This allows the public to witness inter-floor circulation as elevators travel up and down the facade, giving the impression of activity within the building.

Set to rise 1,968 feet, the Nexus Tower will be the tallest of the structures within PLP’s larger master plan. Other structures include The Platform for Contemporary Arts, a performing arts complex; The LZ Park Tower, a 984-foot office tower; and The Concoursea large scale retail and leisure facility.

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

Height and the lateral loads the tower must sustain were heavily influential in the design of the Nexus Tower. By fanning out the volumes, lateral loads could be divided up, reducing the overall impact. This also gave the building some visual diversity too, with each volume having a different view out over the city, mountains, and suburbs. The subsequent roof areas were adapted as terracing and green spaces.

There is currently no construction timetable for the tower.

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

(Courtesy PLP Architecture)

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