The Garage -- Beijing B+ Automobile Service Center

PrizeWinner in Interior Design / Workplaces
Firm LocationShanghai, China
CompanyNeri&hu Design and Research Office
Lead ArchitectLyndon Neri & Rossana Hu
Design Team

In a city of 26 million inhabitants and 7 million vehicles, being trapped in a car in Beijing’s notorious traffic is a compulsory experience in the capital city. Neri&Hu’s approach to the architectural renovation and interior design of an Automobile Service Center in Beijing attempts to recapture the allure and magic that was once associated with cars. Each of the main functional areas is contained within modularized steel and mesh boxes, a subtly refined interpretation of industrial storage facilities. Mezzanine platforms, stairs, and walkways float amidst the mysterious black cages, such that cars and people are constantly circulating about. While the brutality of the concrete and steel material palette, the unadorned authenticity of the metal assemblage, are inspired directly by the industrial approach, custom furniture and lighting pieces add a layer of luxuriously textured materials—walnut timber and brushed bronze—provides a sense of hospitality. With this project, Neri&Hu attempts to break through common expectations of what some might consider a vulgar typology, to inject a sense of warmth into an industrial context, and to portray the seductive side of the ubiquitous modern machine.