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KPF-designed CITIC tower is Beijing’s tallest

The tower is the fourth tallest in China and the eighth tallest in the world.

October 04, 2019 |
CITIC Tower from the ground

All images courtesy KPF, H.G. Esch

Stretching 1,765 feet into the sky, CITIC Tower has become the tallest building in Beijing. The tower draws inspiration from the form of the “zun,” a ritual vessel originating in Bronze Age China.

The tower abstracts and refines the zun’s vase-like form, balancing composition and articulation with structural requirements and leasing depth needs. The building is square with rounded corners with its width changing vertically from a 78-meter-wide base, to a 54-meter-wide waist, and finally to a 69-meter-wide top.


CITIC Tower in Beijing


“We abstracted the zun’s elegant form and focused on its gradual transformation, applying this motif across immense scales: from the tower’s overall massing, all the way down to its curtain wall, entry vestibule, and interior detailing,” said Li Lei, Design Director, KPF, in a release.


 Tower exterior lobby


The lobby’s upward curve mirrors the tower’s outward drape in the opposite direction and an interior canopy features custom aluminum ribbing that follows its curvature and echoes the facade expression. KPF’s goal with the design was to create a centerpiece for Beijing’s Central Business District that elicits harmony with the historic capital while also creating aspirational and contemporary architecture.


See Also: KPF breaks ground on West Lake 66 mixed-use development in Hangzhou


The tower comprises the CITIC Group and CITIC Bank headquarters, tenant-occupied office spaces, and a multipurpose business center.


CITIC Tower interior



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