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WTD: After nearly five years of refinement, the first major project, Rhythm Valley, a collaboration between Weitu and Luhu Ecological City, has finally come to fruition this summer. The five-year process of creating this project is also a record of coexistence with the city, connecting people with the lake, ecology with the urban environment. The design thinking and practice of a series of landscapes, as we hope for it: to create an ideal home on the lakeside.
Rhythm Valley ‘s architecture features an outward-facing commercial street and an inward-facing central courtyard space, composed of a large and a small courtyard. Inspired by the birch forest, the architecture’s black and white piano-key-like dynamic notes flow on the facade, and the strong geometric composition gives Rhythm Valley an artistic aesthetic style.
However, the wrapping of the high-rise buildings makes people feel confined, as if they are in a container. The sharp lines of the architecture create a rigid and lack of softness in the space. The landscape’s role is to dissolve the oppressive wrapping of the buildings, while softening and harmonizing the space.
▽方案手稿 Project manuscript
▽项目鸟瞰图 Aerial view
In the design process, we gradually shifted from the initial landscape-heavy approach with elevated terrain and flashy compositions to a more natural approach that focuses on form and structure, with plants as the main actors, using a “gentle and silent” soft intervention to shape the space.
The rich and diverse community culture of Luxelake also played a key role in landscape design. How to reshape the relationship between people and the community, return to the attributes of public spaces, and make the community’s public areas the hub linking public life and home life is a key focus of the design.
▽以植物为主角的空间塑造 Space shaping with plants as the protagonist
We extracted simple line elements from the expressive facade of the building and extended them to the landscape details. First is the entrance design, which connects the building’s left and right ground floor eaves with newly added landscape structures, creating a complete landscape interface. The seamless flow makes the landscape appear to grow from the building. The pure white grilles and cloud bell landscape installations ensure the privacy of the interior space while creating a unique landscape.
▽景观入口连接起建筑左右底商檐口，一气呵成 The landscape entrance connects the building’s left and right bottom cornice in one go
▽入口水景 Entrance water feature
The central courtyard is themed as a pure forest, recreating a more spacious, functional, vibrant, and socially connected “home” in nature. The ground paving is still inspired by the birch forest on the building’s facade, with different lines and geometric patterns of ground structures made from different materials and colors, both continuing the architectural language and breaking the monotony of the fire separation interface.
▽地面铺装延续建筑语言 Floor paving continues the architectural language
Dynamic lines weave through the forest, complementing the building’s composition. The ground cobblestones hidden in the plant clusters have simulated random and irregular natural textures and incomplete forms on the stone surfaces, creating a natural rough texture. They are embedded in the gaps between the gravel and flower mirrors, as if they naturally grow there. The small streams in the forest simulate natural springs, and the moving stones simulate the movement in the canyon.
▽自然粗糙的景观条石隐藏在植物丛中 The natural rough landscape is hidden among the vegetation
▽林间的小涌泉模拟自然界泉眼 The small spring in the forest simulates the natural spring
In the selection of tall trees, species such as Chinese scholar tree, olive, and chestnut oak form pure forests. Each Chinese scholar tree can reach a height of 8-12 meters, which is necessary to conceal the sharp corners of the building’s ground floor facade. Their graceful posture brings light and shadow to the central courtyard. In autumn, the leaves of the Chinese scholar tree and chestnut oak change to deep golden and red colors, creating a colorful autumn scenery in the central courtyard.
▽丰富的植物空间营造 Rich plant space creation
The water feature simulates a stream in the forest, recreating the relaxed and agile atmosphere of a natural creek valley. The stream shape is formed by combining 108 irregularly shaped stone modules of different sizes, sculpted in a more sculptural way and responding to the aesthetic lines of the architecture. Each stone has a corresponding number, and they are cut from different-sized raw stones, resulting in different shapes and sizes.
▽小溪流是孩子们的戏水乐园 The small stream is a playground for children
After the bottoms of the stones are chiseled flat, they are placed on three different elevation platforms. The shape is controlled in 3D using Rhino software, and then they are processed according to the perspective view in the factory and assembled on-site. The water feature is not only for aesthetics but also for interactive participation. In summer, it becomes a water playground for children.
▽溪谷设计过程动画 Valley design process animation
▽由不同大小的原石多维立体切割而成，形态尺寸各不相同的林间水景 The water feature in the forest is cut from different sizes of raw stones
In terms of functional layout, the central courtyard offers rich content, including a lounge under the trees, a neighborhood garden, a fun water feature, outdoor leisure office areas, a sensory garden, a rooftop garden, etc., meeting a variety of needs for daily life, work, socializing, parenting, solitude, and wellness for homeowners.
▽儿童乐园引入原木系列kompan游乐器械 Children’s park introduces log series kompan amusement equipment
The central core area with the most abundant sunlight is designed as a spacious lawn activity space. This is also the most concentrated area for community activities. Shaded areas are provided around it for cooling and resting. The elegant form of the white shade structures appears to rise from the ground, creating a complex three-dimensional curved surface like flowing art.
▽星空之廊在树林的掩映中 The starry gallery is hidden among the trees
Under the shade structures, shared benches and lounge areas create ideal spaces for neighborhood community activities and socializing. The top of the shade structures features about 500 starry sky lights simulating the Milky Way. Each light is numbered according to the distribution characteristics of the Milky Way galaxy and placed with different sizes and spacing, resulting in a magical Milky Way experience.
▽廊架顶部的星空灯 Starry light at the top of the porch
A small central courtyard encloses a health and wellness garden that awakens the five senses with natural elements, regulating users’ emotions and helping the body achieve a more harmonious state. Fragrant plants like rosemary create natural scents, stimulating the senses. Three-dimensional shapes and diverse colors and textures visually regulate emotions. The landscape also considers “age-friendly design,” achieving humanized design in multiple dimensions, including seating, backrests, armrests, and equipment.
▽五感花园充分融入适老化设计 The Five Senses garden is fully integrated into the age-friendly design
We use landscaping to open up the boundaries of “home,” treating the 4.5-11m high, approximately 1500 sqm mezzanine level and the nearly 10,000 sqm central courtyard as a complete living space. Breaking the spatial boundaries, from the continuity and quality of space perception, we integrate indoor and outdoor spaces into a whole, extending the living space 500 meters outward, blurring the boundaries of outdoor living. The perfect combination of space comfort and functionality catalyzes various interesting activities.
▽夜间在小区嬉戏的孩子们 Children playing in the neighborhood at night
▽架空层与中庭设计有效联通 The elevated level is effectively connected to the atrium design
Public landscape spaces are not just places for walking and staying; attracting people to participate spontaneously and create interactions is one of the most important factors for public experience. Public areas are no longer cold corridors, empty mezzanines, or distant flower beds. People can find the shadow of the forest under the sunshine, feel the leisurely chats under the green trees, the joy of playing under the echoing corridors, or the tranquility of walking in the forest at dusk in the community.
The rich community of Luxelake also inspired us to use the rooftop space of the entrance building to create a mini pastoral landscape. It is a “field” growing on the rooftop, serving as a natural classroom for children. The fields can be allocated to homeowners for their own organic cultivation.
▽等待业主开垦的屋顶植物园 A rooftop botanical garden waiting to be reclaimed by the owner
In the concrete jungle of the city, a piece of land is preserved, maintaining a close connection with nature. In addition to planting, people can also hold various themed activities and leisure gatherings under the light and shadow corridors, enhancing neighborhood relationships and enjoying the fun of nature.
▽前往屋顶花园的扶梯上，有关于植物和水果图案小设计 On the escalator to the roof garden, there are small designs of plants and fruit patterns
The peripheral commercial street aims to create a new and ecologically rich experiential commercial atmosphere. The block incorporates ecological rainwater garden design, enabling rainwater recycling and reuse. It also features colorful flower mirrors that provide both aesthetic enjoyment and educational value, creating a unique little world for people to explore. The inward-facing central courtyard and the outward-facing commercial street together connect the 24-hour life of Rhythm Valley.
▽外围商业街及雨水花园 Outside commercial street and rain garden
设计团队：李卉 张黎 唐志杨 赵冬舸 熊颖 黄满玉 王玉彤 张盼 郭燕 田飘 梁运鸿 张雪琨 李理 赖小玲 马利平 宋照兵 胡小梅 吴永攀 张书桢 董瑜 庞虹宇
建筑设计：CPD City Projects and Developments Pty Ltd
Project Name: Rhythm Valley,Chengdu LuXELAKE
Project Address: No. 218 Manting Street, Huayang Street, Tianfu New District, Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China
Owner: Chengdu Wanhua New City Development Co., Ltd.
Owner Team: Wanhua Landscape Center
Landscape Design: WTD GROUP
Design Team: LiHui, ZhangLi, TangZhiyang, ZhaoDongge, XiongYing, HuangManyu, WangYutong, ZhangPan, GuoYan, TianPiao, LiangYunhong, ZhangXuekun, LiLi, LaiXiaoling, MaLiping, SongZhaobing, HuXiaomei, WuYongpan, ZhangShuzhen, DongYu, PangHongyu
Architectural Design: CPD City Projects and Developments Pty Ltd
Landscape Construction: Sichuan Jintianxia Landscape Engineering Co., Ltd.
Landscape Soft Outfit: Chengdu Hezhi Decoration Design Co., Ltd.
Flower Special: Chengdu Huimei Flower Garden Engineering Co., Ltd.
Completion Time: May 2023 Landscape Area: 20,060 sqm
Photography: xf photography
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