Pearl River Tower

Guangzhou, N/A / China

Located in Guangzhou, China, the 309-meter Pearl River Tower is one of the first supertall buildings to be certified LEED® Platinum. Its design incorporates many sustainable measures to reduce its impact on the local electrical grid, reduce carbon emissions, and provide the most comfortable interior environment possible.

The tower's generally rectangular floorplate has been carefully shaped to minimize design load effects from wind forces. East and west elevations are straight while the north façade is convex and the south façade is concave. The south side of the building is dramatically sculpted to direct wind through four openings, two at each mechanical level, to accelerate the air and drive energy-producing vertical axis wind turbines. The building's geometry significantly enhances airflow through the wind turbines—up to 2.5 times the ambient wind speed—and, consequently, turbine performance. At night, LED lights change color and intensity to indicate the amount of wind energy being created.

Inside, headquarters offices are located on floors 59 through 68. Lower floors are leased to tenants who require significant energy savings. The 3,500 square-meter International Conference Center, located in the pearl at the tower's base, contains a 500 square-meter conference hall, smaller conference rooms, and back-of-house functions.

Architect of record

Richard Tomlinson
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
224 S. Michigan Ave., Suite 1000
Chicago, IL 60604, United States
Phone: 312 360 4378


Tim Griffith Architectural Photographer
United States
Phone: 415 640 1419