The Dutch firm headed by “starchitect” Rem Koolhaas this week revealed details of its first Hong Kong project: the Sogo “twin towers” at the site of the former Kai Tak airport for which Lifestyle International paid HK$7.4 billion (US$943 million) in 2016.
Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) is best known in Asia for large public commissions, such as the CCTV headquarters in Beijing – nicknamed “Big Pants” for its unusual shape – and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange building with its floating base.
Working in Hong Kong’s scrunched-up urban landscape has its own challenges, says Chris van Duijn, the OMA partner in charge of the firm’s Asian operations.
The two towers will occupy an awkward site that will be surrounded on all sides by other developments. They will have a total gross floor area of more than 100,000 square metres and will feature a Sogo department store as well as other retail, entertainment and food and beverage outlets.