Grimshaw’s £150 million scheme to create the Eden Project’s first overseas attraction has received a major boost during Theresa May’s visit to China
Eden Project International chief executive David Harland – travelling with the British prime minister on her first official visit to China – signed a deal with Zhao Lintao of China Jinmao Holdings in Beijng setting out the terms of the partnership’s development of Eden Qingdao.
The water-themed project – one of three Grimshaw is designing in China – is expected to start on site this year and be open to the public in 2020.
It will feature one of the world’s largest indoor waterfall, which at more than 40m tall, will be roughly the same height as Niagara Falls.
Harland said: ‘This is a huge development in the history of the Eden Project and the biggest step we have yet taken towards opening an Eden Project in China.
‘We are very excited about the possibilities for this attraction and the city of Qingdao and are very pleased to be working with our friends and colleagues at China Jinmao Holdings.’
Grimshaw was appointed last year for a series of Eden Project attractions in the Asia-Pacific region. The practice designed the Rainforest and Mediterranean biomes at the original Eden Project in Cornwall, which opened in 2001.
Partner Jolyon Brewis said: ’We are thrilled to be continuing our partnership with the Eden Project team, and to be joined by new partners in China. The Qingdao Eden Project continues our approach of creating beautiful structures inspired by the efficiency of nature, made unique by the specific requirements of the location and theme.’
The Eden Project is due to welcome its 20 millionth visitor during 2018 and has generated £1.7 billion for the regional economy.
Grimshaw’s Eden Qingdao scheme - early iteration