Shenzhen Stock Exchange
by OMA nears completion


Here are the latest photographs of the OMA-designed Shenzhen Stock Exchange, set to complete next month in the Chinese city (+ slideshow).

Shenzhen Stock Exchange by OMA

Designed by Rem Koolhaas' OMA back in 2006, the much-debated structure comprises a 250-metre skyscraper with a vast podium hoisted up around its waist, forming a canopy for a public plaza at its feet.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange by OMA

The three-storey podium is suspended 36 metres above the ground to create the large trading rooms of the Stock Exchange, while a landscaped garden will be accessible on its roof.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange by OMA

A strict grid of square windows generates the facade of the 46-storey tower, while the surrounding podium displays a zigzagging sequence of structural trusses.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange by OMA

Scheduled to complete in May, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange is OMA's second-largest building in China after the CCTV Headquarters in Beijing, which completed last year. The firm is also currently working on a second Shenzhen skyscraper in the city's business district. See more architecture in Shenzhen or more projects in China.

Shenzhen Stock Exchange by OMA

Dezeen filmed a series of interviews with Rem Koolhaas, as well as OMA partners Reinier de Graaf and Iyad Alsaka at an exhibition about the firm's work in London. Watch the movies or see all our stories about OMA.

Photography is by Philippe Ruault.

Here's some extra information from OMA:

Shenzhen Stock Exchange

The essence of the stock market is speculation: it is based on capital, not material. The Shenzhen Stock Exchange is conceived as a physical materialization of the virtual stock market: it is a building with a floating base, representing the stock market – more than physically accommodating it. Typically, the base of a building anchors a structure and connects it emphatically to the ground. In the case of Shenzhen Stock Exchange, the base, as if lifted by the same speculative euphoria that drives the market, has crept up the tower to become a raised podium, defying an architectural convention that has survived millennia into modernity: a solid building standing on a solid base.

SZSE's raised podium is a three-storey cantilevered platform floating 36m above the ground, one of the largest office floor plates, with an area of 15,000 m2 per floor and an accessible landscaped roof. The raised podium contains all the Stock Exchange functions, including the listing hall and all stock exchange departments. The raised podium vastly increases SZSE's exposure in its elevated position. When glowing at night, it "broadcasts" the virtual activities of the city's financial market, while its cantilevers crop and frame views of Shenzhen. The raised podium also liberates the ground level and creates a generous public space for what could have been what is typically a secure, private building.

The raised podium and the tower are combined as one structure, with the tower and atrium columns providing vertical and lateral support for the cantilevering structure. The raised podium is framed by a robust three-dimensional array of full-depth steel transfer trusses.

The tower is flanked by two atria – voids that connect the ground directly with the public spaces inside the building. SZSE staff enter from the East and tenants from the West. SZSE executive offices are located just above the raised podium, leaving the uppermost floors leasable as rental offices and a dining club.
The generic square form of the tower obediently blends in with the surrounding homogenous towers, but the facade of SZSE is different. The building's facade wraps the robust exoskeletal grid structure supporting the building in patterned glass. The texture of the glass cladding reveals the construction technology behind while simultaneously rendering it mysterious and beautiful. The neutral colour and translucency of the facade change with weather conditions, creating a mysterious crystalline effect: sparkling during bright sunshine, mute on an overcast day, radiant at dusk, and glowing at night. The facade is a "deep facade", with recessed openings that passively reduce the amount of solar heat gain entering the building, improve natural day light, and reduce energy consumption. SZSE is designed to be one of the first 3-star green rated buildings in

The 46-storey (254m) Shenzhen Stock Exchange is a Financial Center with civic meaning. Located in a new public square at the meeting point of the north-south axis between Mount Lianhua and Binhe Boulevard, and the east-west axis of Shennan Road, Shenzhen's main artery, it engages the city not as an isolated object, but as a building to be reacted to at multiple scales and levels. At times appearing massive and at others intimate and personal, SZSE constantly generates new relationships within the urban context, hopefully as an impetus to new forms of architecture and urbanism.

  • lanze


  • Don

    What a sad building.

  • santiago

    This is about the ugliest building I have ever seen! And I mean, E-V-E-R!

  • chinaimport

    Not inspiring at all. Just a project to pay OMA’s head staff and other bills. I bet it looked better as a working model.

  • mmmhhh

    That’s some clear architecture.

  • JayCee

    It’s grey. That’s about all you can say about it. Although I am sure it will be spatially more interesting inside.

    • arey

      How many shades of dull grey?

      • Fizz

        I should say 50 :P

  • Desk

    Best building in Shenzhen. Certainly makes a strong statement. Not for the weak minded.

  • jef


  • scuffedshoes

    It’s like Lever House on steroids. And not in a good way. More like Lever House got angry and turned into The Incredible Lever Hulk.

    • arey

      The Hulk is offended by your comment, urrrrrrrrgh!

  • MissyKay

    If the idea was to seamlessly blend it into its context they did a pretty good job..

    • arey

      “Seamlessly blend it into its context”, HA HA
      “A pretty good job”, HA HA HA!

  • davvid

    This looks amazing. The way the pattern of windows comes all the way to the corner and top of the tower. That is wonderful. It reminds me of a well tailored suit.

    • Allan

      Hehe. Well-tailored suitcase.

    • arey

      A well tailored suit on an ill fitting patron!

  • design observer

    A tower with a tu tu.

    • arey

      It’s more like a tower with a chastity belt and someone threw the key away!

  • Airborne

    If this tower stood in a city full of fluid buildings from Hadid, it would be more easily appreciated as something different. Fluid or cubic, it doesn’t matter. It is all in the details and this building shines as a dark star. That’s meant as a compliment because dark stars attract.

  • Bernie Bernake

    A flak tower for the financial age. Plenty of open space to shoot poor people if they get too close.

  • SYP

    The idea is great, but the execution is not that great. It deserves attention, though. It seems that its idea has more architectural potential.

    • arey

      What idea, the edifice is devoid of any new ideas.

  • gabe c

    Quite a different building from what the renderings, which I really liked, had indicated. Seems like the biggest difference is the floating volume was supposed to be a lot more transparent and the V-shape trusses quite prominent, which makes the night shot the best image of all. Working in China myself, I really wonder about the reasons behind choosing such dark and solid glass for the trading floor volume, which blends in with the rest of the building and defeats its greatest feature in the renderings in my opinion.

  • christine

    Creating public space with private money is something remarkable, especially in the Chinese post-communist context. Rem Koolhaas and OMA give a proof to Asia that you can make bold statement, create public space and improve architectural typology by playing intelligently with programme and construction.

    There is an alternative to the puritanism of Zumthor and the expensive paramatrism of Zaha Hadid. Bravo Rem Koolhaas.

  • Reinhard04

    That’s an ugly and brutal building. Every office has got its bill-paying whore projects, no question, but I wonder why this was published. Perhaps the PR section at OMA was sleeping.

  • arey

    Que feo! A very large and ugly duckling. If you have a name it gets published. Tres domage!

  • Deceptively simple!

  • jimmy

    OMA likes to use a lot of steel on a building without a true justifying cause. Very unfriendly design. It can only happen in China as people there tend to buy visual impact with their easy money. For sure this building got all the eyeballs. The most ugly building done by a well known architect.

  • blau

    We should wait until this is completed. This is shaping up to be a very interesting project, and will definitely provide a provocative and timely addition to Shenzhen’s skyline. So far I’m digging the raw facade – excellent attention to detail!

  • follacci

    The building in itself is truly very, very, very good, as usual, but why that f***ing grey? Why everywhere?

  • uis_devil

    Enough of OMA. Looks out of scale and the black is just out of context (is that a city for bats?), awfully Gotham City inspired.

  • fraperic

    I wonder what kind of education/lifestyle/tastes 99% of the commenters on Dezeen have, because I find this building to be extremely beautiful. For a building that is so simple, to have so many levels is fantastic. I guess that is the beauty of OMA, taking obvious elemental forms, and through intellectual rigour combining them into something special.