Beilun Youth Cultural Plaza is set to become an outstanding gateway and cultural precinct defining a new identity for the city of Ningbo. Combining both masterplan and placemaking principles to reinvigorate the growing metropolis, the Woods Bagot team designed the 303,000m² cultural square to create both a vibrant atmosphere and a new cultural centre. At the heart of Woods Bagot’s design was instilling retail as a framework and then integrating hotel, office, television studios, entertainment and theatre into the new square. This integration culminates a new community hub for the people of Ningbo.
Placemaking at both an urban and human scale has also informed the design. Natural amenities have been maximised, with retail space taking up half of the GFA. The masterplan makes a significant urban contribution to the city of Ningbo by joining together two sides of a major thoroughfare. This is achieved by elevating the plaza and linking both the hotels and high-rise commercial tower. Between these anchor buildings is the main events plaza where we envision extensive community activity with landscaping and shaded spaces to rest and enjoy the plaza, performance spaces, and strategic lighting in the evenings for dining and theatre goers.