Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre

Hangzhou, China

Situated 150 km from Shanghai, Yuhang District in Hangzhou City is an important historical and cultural region for China, and is now one of the most prosperous cities in the country.

The project to deliver the proposed Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre will see the creation of an exceptional performance and arts facility to mirror Hangzhou’s iconic history.


Buro Happold has been commissioned to deliver the grand theatre building, which will be at the heart of the new centre. Comprising performance and rehearsal spaces as well as a large entrance lobby, the theatre demands complex structural transfers and long spans to enable the extensive open volumes.

People gathering inside the Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre theatre, between red seating and golden walls and ceiling
This cutting edge cultural centre combines striking design with high performance engineering to realise an outstanding new platform for the arts. Image: Philippe Ruault


The main lobby will be a visually impressive, open plan area housed under a 70m2 roof that is supported by composite concrete reinforced cantilever walls. In order to coordinate the structure, services and architecture design for such complicated spaces, our experts have produced Building Information Models to share with the rest of the project team.

Close-up shot of the Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre's white angular facade
Our structural engineers developed a concept that supported the complex structural transfers and long spans required to realise both the striking external architecture and expansive interior spaces that define the Centre. Image: Philippe Ruault

With both the comfort of the visitor and a need to reduce energy consumption at the forefront of our plans, our building services engineers are exploring several methods to heat and cool the arts centre. The main source of energy consumption will be the air conditioning required in the internal spaces, so our team reviewed ways to minimise the size of the plant required. Additionally, a demand controlled ventilation system will be utilised. CO² sensors in each of the spaces will regulate the amount of fresh air supplied, ensuring that the air conditioning will only operate in areas that are occupied. This innovative approach will reduce energy consumption by as much as 30% in comparison to a conventional system.

The Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre and a bright blue sky being reflected in the lake
Image: Philippe Ruault


A cultural highlight for Hangzhou City, the Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre provides outstanding, state of the art facilities that encompass the dynamism of the city and its stunning surroundings.

Sun setting on Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre and the lake
Our building services engineers have ensured the visitor experience within the Centre is as impressive as its iconic facade, developing an air conditioning system that will reduce energy consumption by 30% while maintaining exemplary levels of comfort. Image: Linping New City
View of the iconic Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre from across the lake
View of the iconic Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre from across the lake Image: Philippe Ruault
Aerial view of Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre sitting above the lake
Reflecting both the dynamism of the city and the beauty of its natural surroundings, the Yuhang Cultural Arts Centre is set to provide an exceptional new venue for Hangzhou. Image: Linping New City

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