The Embassy of China in the United States

FACTS

LOCATION:
Washington, DC
YEAR OF COMPLETION:
2009
ROLE:
General Contractor

KEYWORDS:

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

The 429,480-square-foot Chinese Embassy building in northwest Washington, DC, covers 116,207 square feet of land. Located between Van Ness Street on the north and International Drive on the west, the building’s warm, beige-hued French limestone exterior complements the limestone found in typical federal buildings throughout Washington, DC.

Designed by the world-famous Chinese-American architect I.M.Pei, the embassy is a mix of triangular and square roof lines, in keeping with the architect’s taste for geometric forms as demonstrated in his design of the National Gallery of Art’s East Wing and the pyramid at the Louvre in Paris. The building includes a dramatic entrance hall with a 50-foot-tall ceiling, a 200-seat auditorium and spacious wood-lined conference rooms. Walls are made of limestone imported from France, and the floors are from granite brought from China. Construction of the New Chancery Building began in June 2005 and completed on April 1, 2009.

The design features a fusion of the traditional philosophies of Chinese architecture and modernity, which makes it a fine addition to the great embassies in Washington, D.C. The south-facing entrance leads to a modern and functional interior and a Chinese-style garden in the back, adding a touch of tranquility to the compound. The whole compound is composed of a West Office Wing, an East Office Wing and a public area where the entrance hall is located.

The interior space uses the same design vocabulary as the exterior. Lighting fixtures have been specially designed to reflect the geometrical character of the overall space. In various locations, modern and traditional artwork are displayed to showcase China’s rich, cultural heritage.

In addition to the chancery building, CCA also constructed the office buildings for the Economic and Commercial Affairs Office, Educational Affairs Office and Cultural Affairs Office of the Embassy of China in Washington, D.C.

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