Urban Visions: Sustainable Communities, a major exhibition about the work of Foster + Partners, has opened at the Xintai Warehouse in Shanghai. On from 18 November 2021 – 18 February 2022, the show features a wide range of the practice’s work over several decades highlighting the variety and depth of projects that demonstrate its sustainable approach to design. From city masterplans to the work of the practice’s industrial design team, projects from across the world are illustrated through models, photos and videos including the masterplan for the Shanghai Bund, Suhe Centre in Suzhou Creek, and the Yuexiu Global Financial City.

To view the video of the exhibition click here.

The exhibition offers visitors a unique insight into the workings of the studio, in which architects, engineers and other specialists work closely together to design prosperous, socially enriching projects capable of evolving to meet future needs. Foster + Partners’ design philosophy has always been underpinned by the acknowledgment that the design of the built environment must be generated by the needs of people, be respectful of the existing built fabric, cater to the local economy, and above all, be sustainable.

We have specialist in-house teams that develop sustainable frameworks and identify environmental targets for a healthier world. We evaluate both embodied and operational carbon, to fully assess our designs for whole life carbon impact. The results of which are analysed and recorded for all our projects. Over recent years we have developed an analytical framework, based on our bespoke Foster + Partners Responsibility Framework (FRF) driven by a desire to deliver lasting benefits for everyone.

Spencer de Grey, Head of Design, Foster + Partners:

“From the sensitive planning of cities, creating an appropriate setting for our buildings, working closely with nature, and sourcing sustainable materials, each of these moves enables us to create a sustainable approach to design – a central thread that connects our projects. Working across the globe for over five decades we have had the opportunity to work on some of the most challenging and rewarding projects and it is a great pleasure to be able to share our insights through this exhibition.”

Gerard Evenden, Senior Executive Partner, Foster + Partners:

“China has shown remarkable vision in endorsing a green future and we are delighted to have the opportunity to host this exhibition in Shanghai showcasing our sustainable approach to architecture and urbanism. The exhibition also explores how the different teams in our studio work – and how, when it comes to design and innovation, an integrated approach sets Foster + Partners apart.”

Emily Phang, Senior Partner, Foster + Partners:

“People and the planet have always been at the heart of our design approach, which is deeply rooted in the local context. Our experience in China over the past forty years has given us some incredible insights allowing us to design and build projects that respond to the rich history and unique DNA of its cities. This exhibition offers a window into the way we work and our ever-evolving approach to design.”

The practice has been working in China for more than forty years since winning the Hongkong and Shanghai Bank Headquarters in 1979, following on with Hong Kong Airport (1998), Beijing Airport (2008), Xiao Jing Wan University (2016), and the Nanshan Technology Finance City (2019). There are many projects currently under construction in Shanghai, Beijing, Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Datong, Wuhan and Hong Kong. Since 2001, the practice has established a strong research base of historic, environmental, and cultural knowledge in Shanghai that has informed our work on contextually appropriate developments, from mixed-use masterplans to urban design regeneration schemes.

As main sponsor, Lonson has kindly provided the exhibition venue, Xintai Warehouse. The Exhibition is also proudly sponsored by: Poltrona Frau, RFR Asia, ERCO, Devisual and AkzoNobel.

Notes to editors:

The exhibition runs from Thursday 18 November to Friday 18 February at the Xintai Warehouse, No.77 North Shanxi Road, Jing'an District, Shanghai.

Main Sponsor

Lonsen Group was founded in 1970 and has been listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange since 2003. A comprehensive multinational enterprise covering manufacturing, real estate and financial investments, Lonsen Group is committed to becoming a world-class, specialized chemical production. At present, its dyes and intermediates businesses occupy global-leading positions.

Xintai Warehouse is located in Shanghai, on the North bank of the Suzhou Creek. The warehouse, an early 20 Century British facility for the production and the stock of textiles is among the few testimonies of the industrial history of the city still standing in the area. Its unconventionally big scale, 6105m2 on three floors, and its remarkable state of conservation had it a listed as a protected industrial heritage. In order to survive, the building had to be repurposed to new functions, technologically upgraded and transformed into flexible commercial and office spaces, readapted to a context radically transformed and different from the one it originally belonged to.

Major Sponsors

Poltrona Frau – Renzo Frau founded Poltrona Frau in Turin in 1912, from 1926 it was appointed supplier of the Italian Royal Family for its Modern Furniture and home interior design.
ERCO – is a leading international specialist in architectural lighting, using 100% LED technology. We understand light as the fourth dimension of architecture.
RFR Asia – is a design engineering firm with its heritage from Paris. The company specialises in the design of sophisticated building envelopes and complex structures that reconcile engineering and architecture.


Devisual – is a creative architecture visualization company striving for providing professional and efficient visualization solutions.
AkzoNobel – as an expert in making coatings, AkzoNobel is active in over 150 countries and has set its sight on becoming the global industry leader.

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