Xing village is well known for its brown sugar production in Songyang region. Brown sugar used to be the main economical income for villagers, yet with poor production conditions in current family workshops and lack of promotion, revenue from sugar production dropped and many villagers turned their sugarcane farms into tea fields.

Project Name: Brown Sugar Factory
Location: Xing Village, Zhangxi Village, Songyang County, Lishui, Zhejiang Province, China
Program: Workshop/ Exhibition
Client: People’s Government of Xing Village, Songyang County
Architecture Design: DnA_ Design and Architecture
Principle Architect: Xu Tiantian
Design Team: Xu Tiantian, Zhou Yang
Interior Design: DnA_Design and Architecture
Lighting Design: Zhang Xin Studio, Architecture Department of Tsinghua University
Structure System: Steel Structure
Gross Floor Area: 1233.92m2
Building Foot Print: 1309.41m2
Design Period: 2015.06-2015.12
Construction Period: 2015.12-2016.10
Photographer: Wang Ziling, Han Dan

Brown Sugar Factory By DnA_Design and Architecture - Sheet6
©Wang Ziling, Han Dan

A brown sugar factory has been planned integrating current family workshops to improve production conditions, and away from village to avoid fire risks. This factory will carry some other village public programs as well as a showcase for visitors. The building plan is divided into four: sugarcane storage, main production areas, village program, leisure space for both villagers and visitors. Building height and structure format are based on programmatic requirements for different area.

Brown Sugar Factory By DnA_Design and Architecture - Sheet7
©Wang Ziling, Han Dan

Large spaces of production and leisure are covered by light steel structures, a common form for local factories, yet the interior space is opened up by glass partitions creating horizontal transparency from inside out. The main production space is a central stage to showcase sugar workers’ working process into a live performance; village, farmland and mountains become the background of the stage.

Brown Sugar Factory By DnA_Design and Architecture - Sheet3
©Wang Ziling, Han Dan

The space layout, lighting, worker’s uniform, light and shadow, even heat and steam from the cooking wok, are all choreographed; line drawings on glass walls indicate the traditional sugar production process like narration or asides. The building is a live rural museum for Xing village’s tradition and culture, creating a dynamic scroll unveiling rural life and landscape.

Brown Sugar Factory By DnA_Design and Architecture - Sheet10
©Wang Ziling, Han Dan

This building is a space for social communication between village and visitors, as well as benefiting the economic revenues: sugar price increased, revenue from sugarcanes farm has exceeded rice farm or tea field, more villagers started to grown sugar cane in their farmland. This factory is also functioned as village public space for weekend movie events, square dance performances as well as a performing space for the village puppet show group during off production season.

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