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Big Air Shougang, a slope for the Olympic Games

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The Berlin-based Aedes Architecture Forum presents a new exhibition called “Urban Ergonimics – from Steel Plant to Olympia to Public Good”. The exhibition focuses on the new built jumping track for the Big Air Shougang slope in Beijing where sporting events which are part of the Olympic Games will be held.

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The Berlin-based Aedes Architecture Forum presents a new exhibition called “Urban Ergonimics – from steel plant to Olympia to public good”. It touches the story of the transformation of Shougang Industrial Park in Beijing and focuses on the jumping track for the Big Air Shougang  slope where sporting events which are part of the Olympic Games will be held. The exhibition runs until March 10, 2022 and encourages visitors to communicate ergonomically with the building through an interactive game.

The upcoming Olympic Games in China will be used to bring several urban development and transformation projects forward. One example is the transformation of the gigantic industrial relics of Shougang Industrial Park. The Berlin-based Aedes Architecture Forum runs an exhibition about the newly built Big Air Shougang slope for freestyle skiing and snowboarding that is located in Shougang Industrial Park, once one of the largest steel plants in the Chinese Beijing region. The slope, designed by Brian Li Zhang’s design office TeamMinus at Tsinghua University in Beijing, will be used for ski and snowboard sporting events during the Olympic Games and remains open to the public as a new public space. Given these points the office received the WA World Architecture award for the Big Air Shougang transformation project.

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The Olympic Games and the transformation of the Shougang Industrial Park

The architects designed the Big Air Shougang complex with elegant curves on the edge of Qunming Lake, formerly used for cooling water, next to the preserved cooling towers of the steel production. According to the architects the design of the slope was vitalized in an elegant way by the Chinese Flying Apsaras, which were largely represented in the Dunhuang mural arts. Besides the freestanding ski jump, TeamMinus also renovates the former Oxygen Factory on the industrial site. The main building of the factory and as well as the pump station tower will be each renovated as Services Center and Check-ins. The Vent Tower will provide camera spots for OBS. All these buildings will be kept for the post-game recreations, open to citizens with a unique industrialized character for the post-Olympics theme park. The architects state that the Shougang Big Air shall become the world’s first permanent Big Air venue for long-term usage. Above all, the industrial remains form a spectacular scenery together with newly designed open spaces, that connect a park landscape with a river close by.

Olympic Games and Urban Ergonimics

The exhibition at Aeades Architecture Forum that focuses on the Big Air Shougang ski jump playfully encourages visitors to recreate and optimise the optimal ergonomics of the athletes. At two launch sites, visitors can put themselves in the position of the athletes with the help of templates and practice the best posture for elegant turns and jumps. The playful approach to an architectural concept illustrates the training of the athletes. After all, the ski jump can only be used with the optimal body posture, so people have to communicate ergonomically with the building.

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Further Projects of TeamMinus presented at Aedes

To illustrate the architectural approach of TeamMinus, the exhibition presents further projects where movement plays an important role and where a playful ‘space for movement’ decisively shapes the architecture:

The Jianamani Visitor Centre in Qinghai Province is a cultural centre for the local Tibetan population and visitors, providing access to the significant historical and religious sites of the local culture from the publicly accessible roof platform.

The underground cultural centre in the Piazza and Art Space Gujiaying Village in Yanqing (where parts of the Winter Olympics will also be held), was built in 2019 for the Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition. The roof is a ground-level public space whose corners are bent up to provide natural light to the cultural centre below. With a curved, suspended ramp, Zhang Li and his team lead users and visitors inside, echoing the movement of the curved roof surfaces.

The Aranya Ideas Camp and Community Centre in Qinhuangdao on the coast of Shandong province connects elongated ramps across the roof to interior spaces. Run by a private educational institution, it offers summer and winter courses where children learn new aspects of culture, their craft skills and social skills with close contact to nature.

The exhibition runs until March 10, 2022.

Learn here more about the Aedes Architecture Forum and the exhibition. Interested in more projects in China? Or: How Chinese are China’s Cities? Then: Read more about Chinese Cities.

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