Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank

Foster + Partners, Hong Kong, 1985


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The steel and glass structure stands out in its context 

Ian Lambot     Download Original

  • The steel and glass structure stands out in its context    
  • Sunscoop shines light into the central atrium    
  • Offices achieve views across the city from the glazed facade    
  • Escalators are used for circulation between floors    
  • Roof structure    
  • The building and its context at night    
  • Site plan    
  • 1st floor    
  • Typical plan    
  • Two bay plan    
  • Three bay plan    
  • Apartment plan    
  • Heliport    
  • Elevation 1    
  • Elevation 3    
  • Elevation 4    
  • Long section    
  • Section crop    
  • Section    

Bank tower, using high degree of prefabricated elements with no internal supporting structure, allowing a 10 story atrium to maximise natural daylighting within a suspension structure

Scale and time requirements induced using prefabricated and factory-finished modules articulated in a stepped profile of three individual towers, respectively twenty-nine, thirty-six and forty-four storeys high, which create floors of varying width and depth and allow for garden terraces.

The service cores are situated on the perimeter so as to create deep-plan floors around a ten-storey atrium. A mirrored sunscoop reflects sunlight down through the atrium to the floor of a public plaza, allowing for maximum natural daylighting within the office spaces. From the plaza, escalators rise up to the main banking hall, which with its glass underbelly was conceived as a shop window for banking.

Bridges spanning between floors break down the scale of the building both visually and socially. Circulation through the building combines high-speed lifts to the reception spaces with escalators beyond, reflecting village-like clusters of office floors.


  • Begun: Jan 1983
  • Completed: Nov 1985
  • Floor area: 99,000m2
  • Sector: Office
  • Total cost: £433M
  • Address: Hong Kong, China

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