The Shanghai Port International Cruise Terminal encompasses a massive 630 thousand square foot site in the very center of the bustling metropolis of Shanghai. It exists beneath a public park that forms its roof, thus conserving precious land for green, public use. Below rests a vast, underground, three-level concourse lit by a unique, earthform bridge forming a gateway to the city. This monumental skylight offers travelers in the terminal the illusion of being at ground level. Finally, a 260 foot-long glass observation bubble floats on steel legs above the park, providing spectacular city views and an arena for public functions like cultural openings and photo shoots. It is the largest and most complex bubble structure ever built.
The terminal is passively cooled by river water, in which it is fully immersed with a system of double walls at its perimeter, precooling the circulating air. The three levels of the terminal effectively constitute an upside down airport layout. Three boarding pavilions connected by underground moving sidewalks to the main terminal stretch for a kilometer along a waterfront wharf. They emerge at intervals to dock three 240 meter boats simultaneously.