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Cloud 9 Sports Center by MAD

MAD designs undulating Cloud 9 Sports Center for Shijiazhuang

Global architecture studio MAD has revealed its design for Cloud 9 Sports Center, a mirrored athletic complex designed as "a luminous cloud" with a wavy shape.

Created for the city of Shijiazhuang in China's Hebei Province, the 6,000-square-metre building will comprise an athletic complex with a gym and tennis courts as well as commercial spaces.

Sports center in Chinese park
Cloud 9 Sports Center is wrapped in a mirrored facade

Its undulating shape was designed to resemble "a luminous 'cloud' that mirrors the natural surroundings", according to the studio. The building will be located in the northern part of the city's Central Park.

MAD wrapped Cloud 9 Sports Center in a translucent ETFE membrane material with a metallic coating that creates a mirrored effect to reflect the surrounding park.

Orange hues inside athletic centre
A warm orange colour was used for the interiors

Inside, orange hues contrast against the silvery facade. The building was also designed to showcase the activities taking place inside, with the translucent membrane offering views into the sports centre.

Underneath the roof, the top floor will have floor-to-ceiling windows that give gym visitors views of the park around the athletics centre.

Exterior of Cloud 9 Sports Center
The top-floor gym overlooks Shijiazhuang's Central Park

Outdoor tennis courts, public areas and green spaces were designed to integrate with the existing park, while the building's first floor extends towards the park and was partially covered in green plants to help it blend in.

MAD designed the Cloud 9 Sports Center with an integrated design to "enhance both its functionality and environmental sustainability".

This includes cooling towers on the second floor for underground ventilation and air circulation.

On the building's exterior, a semi-outdoor staircase was added to the side facing Central Park, allowing gym users and the public to access a rest bar located along the stair and to reach the third floor.

Outside of Cloud 9 Sports Centre
Cloud 9 Sports Center also has an observation deck

Here, MAD designed an observation deck that the studio says offers "panoramic views" of Central Park and of Shijiazhuang.

The building also has an indoor tennis court that is connected to an underground subway and commercial street, which all sit behind a glass curtain wall to benefit from natural light.

Undulating mirrored building by MAD
It was designed to look like a "luminous cloud"

Construction on Cloud 9 Sports Center began in March 2024 and it is expected to be completed in 2025.

MAD has unveiled a number of upcoming sculptural projects in China recently, including an airport with a "bird-like" roof and a wave-shaped art centre in Nanhai.

Project credits:

Principal partners: Ma Yansong, Dang Qun, Yosuke Hayano
Associate partner: Kin Li
Design team: Guo Xuan, Pan Siyi, Miao Fangyi, Lai Hanzhang, Deng Wei, Qiao Xuantong, Wang Fei, Wang Lei, Li Cunhao
Client: Shijiazhuang Central Business District Development Co
Architectural design: MAD Architects
Executive architect: Norendar international
Interior design: MAD Architects, IDL
Structural engineer: CABR Technology Co
Landscape consultant: SWA Group
Curtain wall consultant: Inhabit
Lighting consultant: Beijing Ning Field Lighting Design Co

More images and plans

Cloud 9 Sports Centre by MAD
Cloud 9 Sports Centre by MAD
Cloud 9 Sports Centre by MAD
Cloud 9 Sports Centre by MAD
Orange hues inside athletic centre
Cloud 9 Sports Centre by MAD