MAD unveils its 'floating' cloud-like multi-purpose center for aranya, china

Jul 06, 2021

MAD architects reveals its smooth, rounded design for aranya ‘cloud center’ in qinhuangdao, china. conceived as a ‘floating cloud by the sea’, the large scale structure will provide a new multi-purpose public space for aranya, a seaside community situated on china’s scenic beidaihe coastline.

images courtesy of MAD architects

spanning a total floor area of 2,579 sqm, MAD‘s aranya ‘cloud center’ will host a wide range of functions including a press conference room, a small theater, and exhibition space. a low circular wall delineates the site boundary and wraps around a generous sculpted landscape that’s designed as a ‘white stone garden’ with an undulating lawn and white rocks positioned to evoke a constellation of planets.

the building itself is articulated by its smooth, cloud-like form that appears to float thanks to a predominately glazed first floor. the façade of the ‘cloud’ will be clad in white stained glass, resulting in a pure and polished surface that reflects the surrounding trees and sky above. massive structural overhangs, the largest of which reaches 30 meters long, help create the monumental ‘cloud’ appearance. the volume is balanced and suspended from a central core that provides support for the entire structure and makes its column-free interior space possible.

a winding road leads visitors to the entrance of the building, where a pool of water reflects both the building and the clouds above, blurring the boundary between architecture and nature, interior and exterior. the building’s primary internal space, the multi-purpose room, extends skyward through a swirling ceiling. above the spaces, a series of skylights allows ample natural light into the interior to reduce energy consumption. open spaces and movable walls offer a high degree of spatial flexibility to meet the needs of exhibitions, theatrical performances, conferences, and a variety of other functions.

construction of the cloud center began in march 2021. the project’s civil construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2021, with the entire project completed and opened in 2022.


section 1

section 2

floor plan

ceiling plan

first floor plan

roof plan

structural diagram

sketch by ma yansong

project info:

name: aranya ‘cloud center’

location: qinhuangdao, hebei province, china

site area: 3,853 sqm

building area: 2,579 sqm

year: 2019-2022

architecture: MAD architects

principal partners in charge: ma yansong, dang qun, yosuke hayano

associate in charge: kin li

design team: yin jianfeng, liu hailun, chen hungpin, edgar navarrete, pittayapa suriyapee, luis torres, chen yi-en, zhang chao, li gang

client: shijiazhuang pharma group, aranya

executive architect/structural design: zhongke (beijing) architectural planning & design institute co., ltd.

façade consultant: RFR shanghai, king glass engineering co., ltd.

landscape design consultant: beijing sunshine landscape co., ltd

interior design consultant: montaigne design consulting (shanghai) ltd.

lighting consultant: lighting stories (beijing) cultural & creative co., ltd.

signage design: beijing junyi rongchuang cultural communication limited company

stage consultant: beijing yaxun yingda technology development limited company

acoustic consultant: beijing huaxin sifang architectural technique limited company