Location: XIAN, China.

Architect: NEWS-D Limited.

The Guoba Factory cluster in Xian, China, was left as a residual product of industrial transformation, but it has the potential to be revitalized as a space for urban regeneration and the local cultural identity. The proposed development is a 39,000 sqm space for cultural, creative, commercial, and digital entertainment experiences. The architectural strategy is to embrace new and old, with the chimney and water tower becoming a focal point and a landscaped plaza proposed around them. The scattering old and new building blocks are integrated, and the main roads are well connected, increasing the porosity of the project and opening up visual corridors and possibilities for communal engagement. The plaza is the core hub of the project, around which other functional units rotate. The E-sports Game & Entertainment House and Co-working office & retail building are two new main structures that serve as an incubator for startups, creatives, and new generations to share knowledge, experiences, ideas, resources, connections, and emotions. The commercial buildings in between serve as a transitional space and connection of different public areas. The existing architectural heritages are regenerated and adapted into bookshops, art galleries, youth hostels, and creative offices, respectively. The renovated Guoba Factory cluster will not only accelerate the next generation’s power and urban vibrance but also give a new cultural experience and identity to Xi’an while preserving the soul of the place.