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Jinao Tower

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill


Project Status


Year Completed



168,000 sq. meters
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Project Description


Jinao Tower will anchor the entry to Hexi District, an emerging commercial and civic hub. The building’s distinctive faceted form is derived from the juxtaposition of its major systems. A double-skin facade provides solar shading and creates a climatic chamber of air, offering excellent insulation in the hot summer months. Vented openings in the outermost curtain wall allow wind pressure to draw built-up heat out of the cavity, lowering temperatures along the inner exterior wall.

The structural system, an “infinite column” (named in homage to Brancusi’s Endless Column sculpture in Romania), consists of a tube-in-tube system of reinforced concrete. The central core consists of a hybrid shear wall frame, while the perimeter consists of a tubular frame.

Introducing a wrapping diagonal steel brace on each side of the structure (outside of the tubular plane and between the double skin) reduces the amount of structural material required in the lateral system by 40 percent. This brace, a pipe only 500 millimeters in diameter, efficiently directs lateral loads to the foundation.

The adjacent apartment block is designed to the same strict energy-efficient criteria. This building employs a skip-stop section, which allows for cross-ventilation and the ability to receive natural light on both sides.
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