Hailed as what “may be the greatest work of architecture built this century” by the New York Times, the CCTV Headquarters, designed by OMA/Rem Koolhaas and Ole Scheeren, was commemorated today during a ceremony in Beijing marking the official construction completion of the building, set to broadcast the 2012 Olympic Games in London this summer.
Conceived in 2002, and with its exterior completion on time for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, the China Central Television Headquarters has transformed the city’s skyline and redefined the notion of the skyscraper. The building has received worldwide recognition and become a landmark for Beijing, emblematic of China’s transformation and new identity.
At this milestone moment, Ole Scheeren, who was the architect leading the design conception and realization of the project until 2010 as partner in charge of OMA, said:
“This is a truly special and momentous occasion to witness the final completion ceremony of the new CCTV headquarters which will enliven Beijing’s Central Business District. A decade since the beginning, it is tremendously rewarding to see our collective vision realized in a building that will now start to take its active place in this city and as the home to a global broadcaster.”
“I am thankful to be able to look back at 8 years of successful collaboration on this project together with Rem Koolhaas, my former OMA colleagues, Arup, ECADI and all other collaborators, and I am excited that we can share this somewhat historic moment together.”
The 473,000 m2 CCTV building combines the multitude of facilities of the entire process of TV-making into a single loop of interconnected activities that generates a three-dimensional experience of geometric and social continuity. Two leaning towers joined by a vertiginous cantilever form a continuous loop which will pulse with the energy of media production in a building that unifies the entire organization.
A dedicated path circulating through the building provides a “Visitor’s Loop” that in the future will allow visitors to witness and experience the process of television making while offering spectacular views across Beijing and towards the Forbidden City.
The project was led by OMA / Rem Koolhaas, former OMA partner Ole Scheeren (until 2010), OMA partner David Gianotten (from 2010) and project manager Dongmei Yao in close collaboration with partners Shohei Shigematsu, Ellen van Loon and Victor van der Chijs. The design team consisted of project architects Anu Leinonen, Charles Berman and Adrianne Fisher together with a team of over 100 architects from OMA.
Ole Scheeren has been working in China for over ten years, launching his own practice Buro Ole Scheeren in Beijing and Hong Kong in 2010, along with partner Eric Chang. Current Buro-OS projects include Angkasa Raya, a 268 meter tall landmark tower in the center of Kuala Lumpur; a studio/gallery for a Beijing-based artist; a large scale urban development in Singapore; an arts cultural center in Beijing; as well as the recently completed Archipelago Cinema in Thailand.