Visitor Center in Xikeng



Among the thousands of cultural facilities that have enriched China’s tourist infrastructure in the course of the past years, the Wencheng Forest Visitor Center in Xikeng, near the city of Wenzhou, stands out.

Carried out by GLA Design, the building is located between a provincial road and a low-density urban core surrounded by rich woodland. The program is organized in a rectangle 100 meters long and 30 wide, under a large pitched roof whose bold gesture is mellowed by its being broken up into gables of the same inclinations but different heights. This fragmented roof resonates with the geometry of houses in the area, and in general with the architecture of Chinese temples, and it is also a salute to the mountains and forest zones that the region is famed for.

On another note, the building was raised with sustainable techniques reminiscent of certain construction traditions: the main structure of laminated timber ramifies like tree trunks or the pillars of Buddhist temples, while the ceramic claddings resemble the tiles that have been used in China since time immemorial.

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