Beijing Main Train Station

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* A collaboration with Lisa Stroux

Beijing Railway Station opened in the 1950's and is located in an extremely central location, just next to remains of the Ming Dynasty Walls. Over 70,000 passengers arrive or depart from the station every day, who are served by numerous bus lines, the subway and a large number of taxis and cars. The impact on the surrounding traffic and the station itself is evident in the chaos being caused in front of the train station, where two major avenues are also crossing.

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We proposed a design, which combines a traffic diversion scheme with a new passenger platform architecture, without altering the facade or the waiting plaza. The main idea is that all traffic serving the Station is diverted directly above the train platforms allowing for easy dropping-off or picking-up of passengers while serving also drive through traffic.

Buses, taxis and private cars use separate lanes and platform levels that lead directly above the trains. Passenger flow management is optimized for minimum waiting times and surrounding traffic is improved, eliminating scenes of chaos in front of the main plaza. The south waiting platform extends above the Ming Dynasty Walls to allow magnificent view of the Walls and the adjusting park.

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Trying to put our design into a Chinese context, we looked into Chinese symbols for inspiration. A pattern derived from the Chinese symbol for 'tree' is applied for the lane structure, which is supported by a large number of thin tree-like columns making an environment underneath that resembles a forest.

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