The INLET Block 2 Shortlisted as Finalist for 2023 World Architecture Festival Award


DP Architects (DPA) is proud to announce that The INLET Block 2 is a shortlisted finalist in the World Architecture Festival (WAF) Awards 2023, competing under the “Completed Buildings – Shopping” category.

The INLET Block 2 is a three-storey contemporary retail insertion located along North Sichuan Road in Hongkou District, Shanghai. It is part of a comprehensive masterplan that weaves history and culture into the retail experience. Designed by DPA’s Shanghai office, in collaboration with the practice’s specialist arms in landscape architecture, DP Green and lighting design, DP Lighting, The INLET Block 2 expresses sensitivity towards the site’s heritage through its intentionally simple form. Inspired by the peculiarities of the site, its architectural scheme accentuates the history and old-world charm of the site while regenerating the heritage street. This is poignantly captured in the design experience of the central portal where one is led to a covered plaza that opens up into a double volume space showcasing the once hidden eastern wall of the conserved Yingchuan Villa. Surrounding the plaza, the mirror-finished spandrels and ceilings of the building transform this entrance space into an interesting play of reflected imageries, where details of the exquisitely conserved villa are imprinted onto the building, creating visual extensions and juxtapositions. Carrying this design language and experience throughout the development, the application of all-glass curtain walls transforms the building into a platform from which one can both admire history and participate in street happenings.

Designing the INLET Block 2 showcases how architectural space takes precedence when planning for building interventions within a historically rich context, resulting in the creation of an Urban Portal that transcends time and space, creating interesting spatial and experiential possibilities, inviting visitors to freely construct their own unique retail experience.

Interior of The INLET Block 2, floor to ceiling glass windows

Singapore will be the host country for this year’s WAF, and the festival will be held at Marina Bay Sands from 29th November to 1st December 2023. Aside from being able to enjoy live presentations given by the shortlisted finalists in front of a jury panel, participants and attendees can look forward to keynote talks, a product exhibition and networking opportunities that can only come from convening together talented architects from around the world in one venue.