The project uses the combination of the mat and tower/slab type to create a new dominant type for the city of Beijing. In order to best represent the idea of a city under a single roof, the courtyard is expanded to fit a collection of towers within it, and then the four sides or facades of the tower type are deconstructed towards the perimeter of the expanded courtyard and sheared at the top towards the middle of the courtyard, creating a roof over it. This shear also allows a point support for a top courtyard, or mat condition that, by the joining of the towers at the high point form a “crown” mat.
The mat includes a programmatic openness to include the complexed ad-hoc realities of the present day Hutong. This been a field of semi informal live/work units that share common services. In this field, commerce and living units share the same common space and act as a commune. The units are compartmentalized, and each unit is accessed through a private courtyard and stair core, here, mini stair cores access each unit but are shared by common “vertical courtyards.”