Nanchang Waves takes inspiration from the natural qualities of the wetland
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Nanchang, China – Nanchang Waves, designed by Nordic Office of Architecture, is a new community centre, which takes inspiration from the natural qualities of the wetland.

The project is located next to the Elephant Lake Wetland Park which informed and inspired the design. The design concept is to bring the natural qualities of the wetlands into the project, creating a spatial experience where the building and the landscape blend together. The design consists of three natural elements, water, earth and sky, corresponding to three functional areas: the front square, the commercial facilities and the observation tower.

The landscape design of the front square is integrated with the ancient water culture of Nanchang and the landscape of the Elephant Lake. Each of the landscape nodes contain functions for people of different ages and provide interesting and memorable spatial experiences. 

The main body of the building forms a continuation of the landscape elements in three dimensions through the language of stretched curves and waves. The landscape of the front square extends above the three-dimensional space of the architecture, through a slowly unfolding outdoor amphitheatre. The rooftop garden is accessible from both sides of the building. Underneath the rooftop space are scattered retail and commercial functions, which are linked to the rich outdoor activity space in the front plaza, bringing vitality to the community around the project.

At the end of the park facing Elephant Lake Wetlands stands the project's biggest highlight: a viewing tower that represents the blueprint for future living and the new spirit of the city.

The double spiral staircase serves a greater function than simply allowing one to get up and down from the viewing tower. It is an interesting journey in itself, curving around and providing wonderful vistas along the way. When reaching the top, one enters the observation deck, where people can get an unparalleled view of the natural landscape of the nearby wetlands, admire the city skyline in the distance, and experience the changing landscape at sunrise and sunset.

“The project is inspired by the surrounding wetlands as well as the cultural heritage of Nanchang, with its many towers. It is our contemporary contribution to a proud history. Our concept is based on creating a green and blue centre for the community, where the natural qualities of the wetlands are brought into the heart of the development, turning an indoor commercial program into an extended outdoor experience,” said Thomas Lindgård Fagernes, lead architect, Nordic Office of Architecture,