The Summit is a two-parcel development in Suzhou, China, that connects to the existing metro station and borders both sides of Suhua Road, the city’s ceremonial boulevard and center for commercial development. The mixed-use development features two towers—one 16 stories and the other 39 stories—and includes office, retail and luxury residences that offer unobstructed eastern views to Jinji Lake.
The design concept organizes the various program elements into a series of interlocking volumes. Each volume is sized to provide optimal functional depth for the program contained within, while creating a compositional quality that visually unifies the two parcels. An innovative gridded façade system is utilized for both towers to further visually connect the buildings while seamlessly integrating operable ventilation for all users. The project is certified LEED Gold, and direct connection to mass transit, extensive green roofs, locally sourced materials and high-performance enclosures are a few examples of the sustainable strategies employed throughout.
The efficient, modern towers also strive to translate elements of context into the architectural expression. Therefore, the project color palette of white, grays and black was inspired by the architectural vernacular famous in Suzhou. Capturing an essence of the city was critical, as the project enjoys unparalleled visibility in the downtown due to its location along the ceremonial boulevard and its immediate adjacency to the active public plazas to the east.