Shanghai's Lingang announced on Tuesday that it has started work on a world-class art center project that would create another major cultural landmark in the city.
Called the Lingang Art Center, the facility will be built on the biggest of the three islands on Dishui Lake, a man-made lake in the shape of a circle, around which Lingang has been planned and built. The art center, which will feature a 1,500-seat theater and a 400-seat multifunctional hall, will take four years to complete.
Four design firms, Foster Partners and Heatherwick Studio Limited from the United Kingdom, 2Portezamparc from France and SNOHETTA from Norway, are bidding for the project. They will reveal their designs in May.
Located in southeastern Shanghai, Lingang is the city's smart manufacturing base. US electric carmaker Tesla Inc. is one of the recent major international players to have set up a plant in the area.
"Lingang, which holds a strategic importance in Shanghai's future development, is more than a smart manufacturing base of the city," said Chen Jie, Party chief of Lingang management committee.
"It also focuses on its construction to serve the all-round development of people and their needs to pursue a beautiful life."
The three islands on the Dishui Lake have been designed to serve different purposes. The southern island, which is home to a five-star hotel and a yacht marina, is designed as a destination for weekend getaways, while the western island will feature a cluster of business and commercial properties. The northern island, on which the new art center will be built, is expected to become "an island of art and culture", according to Chen.
A cluster of cultural landmarks around the lake has also been built or planned. Such includes the Shanghai Maritime Museum, the Shanghai Planetarium, which is set to become the world's largest upon its completion in 2020, and a demonstration zone of future city development, also known as Harbor City Plaza. The 148,000-square-meter demonstration zone, which was announced in December at the Lingang Future City Forum, will serve as a community comprising office spaces, residential apartments, commercial entities, hotels and a library when it is completed in 2021.
"We hope the art center will become another cultural landmark, its design is well in sync with other existing and planned cultural landmarks around the lake," Chen said at the launching ceremony of the art center.