Heart of Gold: GKD gold metal mesh represents an internet company’s noble mission of a connected culture

May 17, 2021 | Case Histories

In Chinese culture, gold signifies prosperity, health and wisdom—the signs that the right path has been chosen. That couldn’t be more evident than at Tencent, a Chinese internet giant that has wrapped the interiors of its world headquarters in a golden shroud of GKD metal mesh.

The atrium’s stunning backdrop has a primary function to provide safety from the open floors of its two towers. This golden safety net of metal mesh also symbolizes a workforce networked with a world in flow. Its rigid framework offers safety and security while simultaneously providing visual continuity between floors.

The highly connected interior design is also a reflection of the overarching intent to unify the occupants of the building’s split tower design, which features three copper-colored Skystreets that make it appear as if the two towers are reaching out and embracing one another. The Skystreets also referred to as “links” in the design, are a trio of common amenity areas that facilitate the intention of cultivating connections between employees.

A Culture Link, Health Link and Knowledge Link serve as gathering spaces—modeled after a US campus quad—that connect its employees to one another and to these three fundamental areas that offer novel experiences and learning opportunities that enhance quality of life. Giving employees access to an abundance of health, knowledge and culture in a communal setting also encourages the social aspect of behavioral change. This increases the likelihood of spontaneous mingling of organizational knowledge between employees from outside of conventional organizational charts, that may result in thought innovation.

The golden hue of GKD’s metal mesh compliments the wood and ceiling installation in the atrium and reflects off of the cool gray marble flooring and glass walls of the lobby. GKD devised an exacting match of the soft golden tone specified by the customer. This meticulous engineering in the fabrication and installation of the golden-anodized aluminum wires and tubes ensures a consistent appearance of texture and tone throughout the entire pattern—even under several different lighting conditions. This golden light cascades into the building’s main floor and lobby, and creates a warm glow of intimacy, setting the stage for socialization or a mindful stroll through the atrium, despite the large volume of space.

 

In addition to safety, connection and warmth, the metal mesh installation is a conduit to the noble intention of passive energy practices. The Tencent two-tower design reduces carbon emissions and energy consumption by 40% compared to conventional skyscrapers, as the interior metal mesh allows the towers to take advantage of natural ventilation via operable windows and keeps outdoor air exchanges ventilating the interiors.

By incorporating fresh air, a warm atmosphere and dedicated spaces for learning and discovery, Tencent’s headquarters fosters a workplace culture of putting people and innovation at the heart of its business.


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