Nanjing University in China has selected US-based architecture firm HDR to provide the conceptual and schematic design as well as a masterplan for its new College of Engineering and Applied Sciences building.
The proposed building will have a floor area of 650,000ft² and will host more than 1,600 students and faculty members on a daily basis.
After completion it will house four academic departments, which include material science and engineering, quantum electronics and optical engineering, biomedical engineering and energy science and engineering.
It will also house six interdisciplinary research centres, a conference centre and space for common use for student and faculty gatherings.
HDR director of design Brian Kowalchuk said that the challenge is to create an iconic and memorable image for the university’s science and engineering programme that also functions efficiently at an international standard.
"In addition to modular and flexible teaching labs, the building will incorporate gathering destinations for multi-disciplinary collaboration among students, faculty and industry partners," Kowalchuk said. "Science crosses political and physical boundaries, but it is still essential that the building follow Eastern principles of design and embrace the local culture."
Nanjing University deal of engineering Shuming Nie said, "The firm was chosen for its technical excellence and ability to create an environment that promotes broad collaboration in science, engineering and medicine."
The project is expected to be completed in 2014.
HDR’s other projects in China include the Beijing International Medical Centre, the Biomedical Park masterplan in Beijing and the Shenzhen Science Park.