Portman Wins China Tall Building Legacy Award for Shanghai Centre

John Portman & Associates is pleased to announce that Shanghai Center, a project designed more than 30 years ago, has received the “China Tall Building Legacy” award in the inaugural China Tall Building Awards issued by the China International Exchange Committee for Tall Buildings (CITAB) and the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH).This award recognizes proven value and performance during the period of time from China’s economic opening in 1978, giving the opportunity to reflect and acknowledge projects which have performed successfully and achieved sustainability at the highest and broadest level. The project was recognized at the inaugural China Tall Building Awards Symposium, Ceremony and Dinner on May 13, 2016 and appears in “China Best Tall Buildings: An Overview of 2016 China Skyscrapers” published by Tongji University Press.

Jack Portman, Vice Chairman for both John Portman & Associates and the real estate development firm Portman Holdings, reflected on the firm’s win, saying, “Shanghai Centre shows the joint expertise of the two Portman firms to deliver beautifully innovative solutions that are also very pragmatic and feasible – the result of the ability to combine development vision with architectural creativity.” “Shanghai Centre has aged gracefully because it was designed with a focus on the functional aspect of how people live, what people enjoy in terms of material textures, and most importantly, how people relate to space,” continued Portman. “This iconic building has timeless qualities; it is quite simple, unlike some of the latest buildings in Shanghai, which have very elaborate curtain walls or very expensive finishes and detailing. Nevertheless, Shanghai Centre still out-performs most of its competitors at almost every project component level. So it’s not the building, as such, that makes Shanghai Centre timeless, but it is more the way the space has been allocated, and how the various uses: retail, restaurant, exhibition, hotel, have been orchestrated to enforce the spaces that are in front and around them. Shanghai Centre is not simply a building, nor a series of buildings, but a community – a community which is welcoming and comfortable for its inhabitants, guests and visitors.”

Shanghai Centre was the firm’s first project in China, and not the only one recognized in these awards. Tomorrow Square, a 60-story tower also in Shanghai and also designed by John Portman & Associates, was cited for Honorable Distinction. The firm has worked in China for more than 30 years and has designed a number of prominent landmarks in Shanghai and Beijing as well as in second- and third-tier cities. Notable projects include Beijing Yintai Center and, currently under construction, Yinchuan Greenland Center.