Dalian Daily

Project type: Multi Purpose


Location: Dalian, China


Time: 2011


Size: 130,000 sqm

A long history as a harbor city with traditional trading ties to Japan, Korea and Russia and a booming tourism and IT industry provide Dalian with wealth and prosperity making it one of China’s most favourable cities. Two decades of construction boom have provided the city of 6 million with an impressive skyline.


The Dalian Daily Project will add three more towers in the bustling heart of the Central Business District. The development comprises two Residential Towers with a maximum height of 168m, three levels of Commercial Base, and the new Headquarter Tower of the Dalian Daily Newspaper.


While Graft’s designs for the Panorama Towers in Las Vegas and the Apartment Tower in Qing Huang Dao were developed out of the horizontal ground plan and its multiplication and alteration along the vertical axis, the Dalian Daily Design focuses on the extreme verticality of the volumes. Each of the towers is composed of multiple vertical panes, which break off at the peaks like glass shards. These sharp-edged and twisted tower peaks will provide ever-changing light and reflection sensations by the movement of the sun. The light will slide along the glazed roof surfaces like on a fractured mountain range.


The twisted glass roofs will provide stunning interior spaces with an abundance of daylight for luxury penthouses in the residential towers and expressive conference rooms in the office building. The facade supports the extreme verticality by random pattern of metal panels streaming upwards along the curtain-wall surface. These patterns provide a higher density on the lower ranges and a higher percentage of floor-to-ceiling glazing of the upper floors, the facade system adjusts to the greater need for privacy at street level and stunning views and exposure for the tower tops.


While the extreme verticality is the key design characteristic of the long distance views, the opposite is achieved for the pedestrian perspective. While maintaining a consistent facade system, the 3 commercial base floors bend and twist like the rooftops along long horizontal cuts of up to 110m in length. The floor plates seem to bend and shear off like geological panes. The created indentions and overhangs guide the beholder throughout the project, articulating entrances and addresses.


The landscape concept for the adjacent cityscape follows the geometry of the facade division. Pavement lines are generated by the tower geometry, emphasizing the guiding function of the architecture, and warp up and twist like the tower tops and base levels to create benches and street furniture. One unifying system of form development is applied over different scales and directions.