AI research lab inspired by computer’s internal components

Construction work is currently underway on a new artificial intelligence research laboratory designed by PLP Architecture. Located in Shanghai, China, the building’s overall form is inspired by a computer motherboard and CPU.

The Shanghai World Laureates Association Artificial Intelligence Lab is part of a Lingang New Area district in the city that will host research and innovation, which also happens to be where the Ring project by Ennead Architects is being constructed.

The building will be situated next to a lake and feature extensive landscaping. Its interior will measure 32,000 sq m (roughly 344,000 sq ft), which will be spread over the two distinct “motherboard” and “CPU” areas.

“Fittingly, the architectural expression of the laboratory building draws upon the most fundamental component of the computer – the Central Processing Unit (CPU),” explained PLP, which also designed the under-construction Tree House timber tower. “The project is comprised of two forms layered one on top of the other. The lower volume, flat and horizontal, equivalent to a computer motherboard, supports an abstract box denoting the CPU itself. The box, hovering over the park at the heart of the WLA campus, suggests that it is the controlling element of the surrounding district.”

The Shanghai World Laureates Association Artificial Intelligence Lab's upper area will be arranged around a central daylight-filled atrium space

The Shanghai World Laureates Association Artificial Intelligence Lab’s upper area will be arranged around a central daylight-filled atrium space

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The lower motherboard area of ​​the building will be divided into quarters and host the main social and collaborative spaces, as well as the primary research area, which will be named the Super Lab. Elsewhere on the lower floors will be a street-facing café, a 250-seat assembly hall, an exhibition gallery and meeting/training spaces, as well as an outdoor seating area.

The upper CPU area, meanwhile, will contain additional labs and amenity spaces, and will be arranged around a central atrium space filled with natural light thanks to a large skylight. Indeed, natural light will be maximized throughout the building, as will ventilation, with generous glazing and operable skylights. Additionally, a lush landscaped garden is to be located on the uppermost floor.

We’ve no word yet on when the Shanghai World Laureates Association Artificial Intelligence Lab is expected to be completed.

source: PLP Architecture

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