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    Engineering Koolhaas

    by Arup*

    To support the rapid expansion of China Central Television (CCTV), an international design competition was launched in 2002 for a centralized headquarters building in Beijing. Winning the commission was Rem Koolhaas (Office for Metropolitan Architecture, OMA), teamed with engineering firm Arup and the East China Architecture and Design Institute as both architect and engineer of record. Koolhaas imagined a building whose three dimensional form brings CCTV's staff and functions into a "continuous tube." This is part of the story of the engineering challenge. Editor

    Because the seismic design of the CCTV building lay outside the scope of the prescriptive Chinese codes of practice, Arup proposed a performance-based design approach from the outset, adopting first principles and state-of-the-art methods and guidelines to achieve set performance targets at different levels of seismic event. Explicit and quantitative design checks using appropriate linear and nonlinear seismic analysis were made to verify the performance for all three levels of design earthquake.

    The basic qualitative performance objectives were:

  • no structural damage when subjected to a level 1 earthquake with an average return period of 50 years.

  • repairable structural damage when subjected to a level 2 earthquake with an average return period of 475 years.

  • severe structural damage permitted but collapse prevented when subjected to a level 3 earthquake with an average return period of 2500 years.   >>>

    Discuss this article in the Architecture Forum...

    * The Arup author team: Chris Carroll, Paul Cross, Xiaonian Duan, Craig Gibbons, Goman Ho, Michael Kwok, Richard Lawson, Alexis Lee, Andrew Luong, Rory McGowan, and Chas Pope.



  • ArchWeek Image

    Proposed headquarters for CCTV in Beijing, designed by Rem Koolhaas, engineered by Arup.
    Image: OMA

    ArchWeek Image

    Public space and circulation.
    Image: Arup


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