Ennead Architects break ground on Shanghai Planetarium

In linking the new museum to both scientific purpose and to the celestial references of buildings throughout history, the exhibits and architecture will communicate more than scientific content: they will illuminate what it means to be human
– Thomas Wong, lead designer

Ennead Architects have broken ground on the Shanghai Planetarium for the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum (SSTM) in the city’s Lingang district.

The international competition-winning design draws inspiration from astronomical principles, invoking the experience of orbital motion. Visitors will be guided through each of the building’s three principal forms – the Oculus, the Inverted Dome and the Sphere – that act as astronomical instruments, tracking the sun, moon and stars and reminding visitors that our conception of time originates in distant astronomical objects.

The 38,000sq m (409,000sq ft) facility will explore the mysteries of space, celebrate the history of Chinese astronomy and reflect the future ambitions of China’s space exploration programme. It will feature an optical planetarium, a digital sky theatre, an IMAX cinema, a solar telescope, an observatory and a range of galleries.

The project, led by Ennead design partner Thomas Wong and management partner Guy Maxwell, is set to open in 2020.

"In linking the new museum to both scientific purpose and to the celestial references of buildings throughout history, the exhibits and architecture will communicate more than scientific content: they will illuminate what it means to be human in a vast and largely unknown universe," said Wong, who has previously outlined the project in an interview with CLAD.

Ennead Architects  Shanghai Planetarium  China  architecture  design  Thomas Wong  CLAD  Shanghai Science and Technology Museum 
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Ennead Architects have broken ground on the Shanghai Planetarium for the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum (SSTM) in the city’s Lingang district. The international competition-winning design draws inspiration from astronomical principles, invoking the experience of orbital motion. Visitors will be guided through each of the building’s three principal forms – the Oculus, the Inverted Dome and the Sphere – that act as astronomical instruments, tracking the sun, moon and stars
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The international competition-winning design draws inspiration from astronomical principles, invoking the experience of orbital motion / Ennead Architects
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