Meixi Urban Helix Structure in Changsha, China
A spectacular viewing platform visible from afar is the architectural highlight of Meixi International New City, a city expansion of Changsa, China. The conical double helix with a height of 98.5 ft provides a 360-degree view, including the Meixi reservoir, which covers a 4,305,564 ft² area.
|Investor||City of Changsha, China|
KSP Jürgen Engel Architects
Weiske + Partner GmbH
Beratende Ingenieure VBI
KSP Jürgen Engel Architekten together with Weiske + Partner structural engineers developed different ideas for the project in 2013. The decision was made in favor of the helix in its present form. The engineers from Weiske + Partner used FEA software RFEM for the structural analysis of the spatial structure.
A pedestrian-accessible 20-foot-wide ramp spirals upward around the exterior of the inclined columns. At the lookout height of 99 ft, the helix has a total diameter of 289 ft. A reverse ramp on the interior of the columns leads pedestrians back down to the base of the structure. The structure has a total length of less than 1 mile and ends in a public park.
The ramps consist of bending and torsion-resistant steel pipes which are supported at the face of the 32 steel columns. Because the ramp is supported on both the interior and exterior of the columns, the eccentric loads are largely compensated. Therefore, the columns were designed as relatively slender and economical hollow box sections. The tapered columns consist of a wider base diameter and are fixed at the footing to a circular foundation on large bored piles.
The lateral support of the helix structure includes filigree tension cables spanning between the columns. The cables' flat inclination reduces the horizontal stiffness of the structure, resulting in smaller seismic load reaction forces.
Do you have questions or need advice?
Contact our free e-mail, chat, or forum support or find various suggested solutions and useful tips on our FAQ page.
RF-/HOHLPROF add-on module for RFEM/RSTAB | Ultimate limit state designs of welded hollow section connections according to EC 3
RFEM add-on module RF-LOAD-HISTORY | Consideration of plastic deformations from previous load conditions
RFEM/RSTAB add-on module RF-/STEEL BS | Design of steel members according to BS 5950 or BS EN 1993-1-1
RFEM/RSTAB add-on module RF-/JOINTS Steel-DSTV | Standardized connections in steel buildings according to EC 3
RFEM/RSTAB add-on module RF-/FE-LTB | Lateral -torsional buckling analysis according to theory II. Order (FEM)
The material model Orthotropic Masonry 2D is an elastoplastic model that additionally allows softening of the material, which can be different in the local x- and y-direction of a surface. The material model is suitable for (unreinforced) masonry walls with in-plane loads.
- In RF‑CONCRETE Surfaces, I obtain a high amount of reinforcement in relation to a lever arm that is almost zero. How is such a small lever arm of internal forces created?
- How can I display membrane stresses in the results of RF‑STEEL Surfaces?
- What is the meaning of the superposition according to the CQC rule in a dynamic analysis??
- How is the automatic creation of c/t-parts carried out?
- When converting from the manual definition of reinforcement areas to the automatic arrangement of reinforcement according to Window 1.4, the result of the deformation calculation differs, although the basic reinforcement has not been modified. What is the reason for this change?
- I design a set of members by using the equivalent member method in RF‑/STEEL EC3, but the calculation fails. The system is unstable, delivering the message "Non-designable - ER055) Zero value of the critical moment on the segment."What could be the reason?
- Does the program check the lap length of the vertical stirrups of a block foundation with smooth bucket sides?
- Why do I get a discontinuous area in the distribution of internal forces? In the area of the supported line, the shear force VEd shows a jump, which does not seems to be plausible.
- Is there a possibility in RFEM to define a global polar grid whose origin lies, for example, in the global zero point and which applies to several surfaces?
- When comparing RF‑CONCRETE Columns with another design software, I get different results. How to explain the differences?
Programs Used for Structural Analysis
Structural engineering software for finite element analysis (FEA) of planar and spatial structural systems consisting of plates, walls, shells, members (beams), solids and contact elements
Stress analysis of steel surfaces and members
Design of steel members according to Eurocode 3
Design of reinforced concrete members and surfaces (plates, walls, planar structures, shells)
Dynamic analysis of natural frequencies and mode shapes of member, surface, and solid models