The Light Garden
The Light Garden is a roof garden of a condominium tower located in the most popular and crowded shopping district of downtown Shenzhen. The main idea of its design is to “light up” the garden in several manners.
The buildings have been put into use before the designing of the garden, hence there are no rooms for landscape architects to negotiate the soil depth of planting. The soil depth, from finish grade to structural slab, is only 0.3m-0.5m, which highly limits the planting condition. The garden must be lifted to create more planting spaces, with a careful consideration of elevation change.
The programmed spaces are designed to be set on a podium system to lighten the weight, and a terracing strategy is adopted based on different planting conditions. Since the building is already operational prior to construction, the lightweight strategy provides great convenience to the transportation of materials and plants from the first floor to the sixth floor. Other than crane, freight elevators and stairs are the only ways of moving the materials.
While the lightweight strategy offers a nice backbone of the garden, the light tone of the planting pallet brings flesh to the garden. Landscape architects carefully arranged various combinations of the colors, leaf forms, and height for the garden. Different lounge spaces are set in a little nuance of the color and texture based on a light green tone, which offers a different social atmosphere. Together with the light color stone planters, the setting presents a bright environmental color. The wild growth of the shrubs blends the edge of softscape and hardscape.
Outside the condominium lobby on the sixth floor are greens in a public lounge, that serves as an extension of the interior lobby. The passage connecting the sunken lounge and central deck is fringed with layers of planting, creating a buffer to relieve the pressure of the tall tower facade.
The Central Deck is composed of a series of moving terraces, offering social spaces which accommodate flexible use based on different number of people. Cascading water feature produces lively water form and white noise that creates a relaxing atmosphere. As people walk toward the east, the view is open gradually along with the rise of the path and anchored with a viewing deck. A great view to the Dashahe River Park can be appreciated while sitting and enjoying the tranquility in the viewing deck.
The garden is designed the way it should be, with the help of landscape architects’ efforts and creativity to hide the challenges behind the scenes.
Name of the project: the Light Garden
Project category: Campuses and corporate gardens
Role of the entrant in the project: landscape architect
Project location: Shenzhen, China
Design year: 2019
Year Built: 2021