Designboom_ The long-anticipated Chengdu Science Fiction Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects has recently opened its doors by hosting the World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon) and the prestigious Hugo Awards, representing a milestone for both the city of Chengdu and the global science fiction community. Located in the heart of Chengdu’s Pidu District, the museum pays tribute to the city’s rich legacy of nurturing renowned Chinese science fiction authors for over five decades. Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, has emerged as a vibrant hub of scientific innovation and research, with a population exceeding 20 million residents. The Chengdu Science Fiction Museum is situated within the Science & Innovation New City, nestled alongside the picturesque Jingrong Lake. The design seamlessly integrates with the natural surroundings, creating a harmonious connection between the museum and the serene parkland that envelops it. This creates a journey of discovery as they traverse pedestrian routes that lead them from the city into the museum’s heart, weaving between indoor and outdoor plazas at multiple levels.
The museum’s roof resembles an expanding nebula cloud radiating from a central star-like point. This celestial motif gives the museum a distinctive appearance and serves as a metaphor for the bridge between our lived experiences and our boundless imaginations. The structure appears to float above the surface of the lake, creating a unique blend of architectural and natural beauty. The Chengdu Science Fiction Museum features a spacious 59,000 square meters and encompasses a range of facilities, including exhibition galleries, a multi-function hall, a conference center, and various amenities. Its sky-lit central atrium and expansive windows that face the Xiling Mountain allow visitors to stay connected with the museum’s lush surroundings. ZHA‘s museum meets the highest 3-Star standards of China’s Green Building Program and employs a sustainable approach. It maximizes natural ventilation and utilizes photovoltaics within its roof canopy to reduce energy consumption. Moreover, the surrounding park is landscaped with native plants that collect and store rainwater, contributing to Chengdu’s sustainable drainage system. This initiative mitigates flooding and enhances biodiversity throughout the city, further reinforcing Chengdu’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
Established in 1939, WorldCon is a significant annual event for science fiction enthusiasts. Named after Hugo Gernsback, the Hugo Awards have been presented at WorldCon since 1955, serving as a prestigious honor in science fiction and fantasy literature, as well as other forms of media. In 2015, Chinese author Liu Cixin’s ‘The Three-Body Problem’ won the 73rd Hugo Award for Best Novel. In 2016, author Hao Jingfang’s ‘Folding Beijing’ received the Hugo Award for Best Novelette, raising the profile of the Hugo Awards in China.