International architecture practice, 10 Design, reveals the scheme for CIFI Kunming Plaza, a retail mixed use destination in Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan in China. The design for this 280,000 sqm development is rooted in the city’s natural terraced landscape and its year-round spring-like weather, aiming to provide ample outdoor spaces with an open retail street.
Name: CIFI Kunming Plaza
Location: Kunming, China
Client: CIFI Group
Scope by 10 Design: Architecture
Type: Mixed-Use, Shopping Mall, Retail Street, Serviced Apartment
Site Area: 49,587 sqm
GFA (above ground): 283,828 sqm
Status: Winner of International Design Competition
10 Design Team
Design Partners | Chin Yong Ng, Lukasz Wawrzenczyk
Project Leaders | Wen Ren, Carrie Wang
Architecture | Rochana Verma, Jin Chen, Nicole Wang, Jeff Widjaja, Isla Song, Tipa Thiptanee, Ted Tan, Mujung Kang
CGI | Peter Alsterholm, Yasser Salomon, Lulu Guo, Henry Han
10 Design was appointed after winning an international competition. The project is located at the north of the old city centre in an up-and-coming neighbourhood where new residential and mixed-use developments are surging. The scheme comprises of two interconnected malls, a retail street, and three serviced apartment towers that seek to embrace the vibrancy of Kunming and provide seamless connectivity with the nearby transport hubs.
The design team led by Design Partners, Chin Yong Ng and Lukasz Wawrzenczyk, commented: “The key driver of the design is the creation of an outdoor retail street that simulates a green valley, winding across the site between the shopping malls and the towers. This green valley is symbolic of the terraced landscape of Kunming, designed to create a dynamic retail experience by seamlessly integrating the indoor space of the malls and towers with the outdoor retail street.”
This harmony of integration is achieved by incorporating a variety of external features into the design, blurring the distinction between interior and exterior. From external dining terraces to leafy balconies, open plazas, and a walkable rooftop, this new destination creates unique experiences by generating exceptional outdoor spaces that visitors can enjoy during the year-round temperate climate.
The retail street also interconnects the shopping malls to the residential towers across the site at multiple levels, creating multiple access points. One of the main entrances is situated at a large sunken plaza, which is also designed to hold outdoor events.
The overall design is inspired by autochthonous elements translated in a contemporary way. The silver aluminum façade of the shopping malls evokes the idea of Chinese silk wrapped around the jewel-like golden mesh window boxes that serve as key entrance points. On the other hand, the design of the retail street resembles the local weaving crafts mixed with green terraced slopes and pocket gardens that mimic the rural Kunming landscape. The rooftop of the malls serves as fully accessible green terraces with open views towards the spring city of Kunming and the sunken gardens below.
The three high-rise towers accommodate 1500 serviced apartments, which provide double-height and flexible spaces that have proven popular amongst the younger population. Two low-rise buildings host the shopping malls across 100,000 sqm of retail, leisure and food & beverage spaces. The entertainment facilities are located at the top floors of the malls to enhance footfall circulation, including a cinema, a gym and a clubhouse with an indoor swimming pool.
CIFI Kunming Plaza brings local elements from the vibrant region of Yunnan into a contemporary development that creates a destination for the up-and-coming neighbourhood of Kunming.
About 10 Design
10 Design, part of Egis group, is an international architecture and masterplanning practice with offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Edinburgh, Dubai, Miami, London, Shenzhen, and Singapore.
Founded in 2010, the practice has designed and delivered work in 60 cities across Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Americas. 10 Design has won over 80 international awards and major design competitions.
10 Design works at diverse scales, from the design of individual buildings to the planning of cities. The practice focuses on bringing innovative design solutions for multicultural projects, with economic and social integrity. Its works include large-scale mixed use development, retail, office, residential, hospitality, transport, education, cultural, and civic projects.
The practice’s parent company Egis is an international group headquartered in Europe, offering consulting, engineering, and operations services in the construction and mobility services sectors. With a worldwide reputation for excellence and sustainability, Egis and 10 Design together provide a comprehensive service that encompasses building engineering and architectural design.