Los Angeles, CA—DJI, provider of civilian drones and creative camera technology, opened its new headquarters. DJI Sky City is a cutting-edge innovation hub. Moreover, the new headquarters “matches the company’s philosophy of being a creative community for the skies with groundbreaking architectural structures never before seen in high-rise buildings of this scale,” DJI announced.
The award-winning architectural team of Foster + Partners designed the new headquarters. Further, its two towers—44 and 40 stories—are set to become a prominent, sustainable new landmark in Shenzhen, China.
“We see Sky City as a product unlike any we’ve ever made: our real home. At the beginning of a new era for DJI, we pay great attention to the growth and well being of every employee. This starts with a work environment that is both practical and delightful. I hope that Sky City will inspire all of us to work together and scale new heights of progress, wisdom, and possibilities to develop solutions that benefit society.”
DJI Sky City
The towers unite DJI employees who were scattered among several Shenzhen buildings during the company’s rapid growth. The towers bring them into a purpose-built structure that puts physical form to the company’s name, Da-Jiang Innovations, or “Innovation without Borders” in Mandarin. With its 656-foot height, Sky City exemplifies how DJI has matured from a flight technology start-up to a global innovation leader.
Across the towers, office, research and development areas are arranged in floating volumes cantilevered from central cores by large mega-trusses. Thus, it gives the impression from the distance that the buildings are suspended in the air. The first use of an asymmetrical suspension steel structure in high-rise towers of this scale, the structure reduces the need for columns. Consequently, it creates uninterrupted working spaces that express Innovation without Borders in architectural terms, added DJI.
In addition, the structure houses drone flight testing labs over four stories. They are tailored for the company’s product development practices. The testing labs are also made possible by the unique V-shaped trusses that give the towers a distinctive identity, against the backdrop of Shenzhen’s skyline.
At 344 feet, the towers are connected by a 295-foot-long suspension skybridge. The lightweight element creates a connection between the two volumes. It also serves as a symbol to show how all departments at DJI are linked to reach a common goal.
What’s more, at ground level, the lifted volumes draw the surrounding greenery into the base of the buildings via a sloping podium garden that is open to the public. The ground floor also features public facilities such as a community healthcare center.
Further, the tower entrances offer the first glimpse of Sky City’s aesthetic and creative approach to the workplace. Each of the lobbies showcases a black pine surrounded by a Zen garden. It is set against a striated wall made by the rammed-earth design process. The result is a harmonious combination of hard-pressed geometry and undulating nature.
Foster + Partners also developed solutions to meet DJI’s wish to create a sustainable building. The floorplates maximize daylight while reducing energy consumption. The twin lift system reduces the number of shafts required and increases usable office floor area. In addition, an intelligent control system allows for a reduction of energy consumption during off-peak periods. Plus, rainwater is harvested and stored for reuse, and gray water is recycled for irrigation of the landscape.