Tianjin West Railway Station
von Gerkan, Marg and Partners

Photo courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners

This new station, located about 130 kilometers south-west of Beijing, serves as a stop on the high-speed line between the Chinese capital and Shanghai, as well as connecting the various regional lines and linking these to the underground network.

Passengers enter the station through the main entrances on the north and south sides. Arched cantilevers above the entrances and tall window fronts convey an initial impression of the space passengers encounter in the concourse, which is flooded with daylight, providing a high quality atmosphere and clear orientation for travelers.

The local urban design function of the railway station is to connect a commercial area to the north with the old city center to the south, bridging tracks, a river and a road in this city of 12 million residents.

The architects have highlighted the bridge function between the city quarters with a 57 meter high and nearly 400 meter long barrel vault roof above the terminal concourse.

Photo courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Its curved roof is reminiscent of a large scale city gate and the long, stretched out concourse beneath of a classic place of transit. The portals of the eastern and western sides of the curved hall are symmetrically framed by arcades. To the south of the building a large and open station forecourt covers a wide area which gives credence to the importance and dimension of this railway station.

Photo courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Photo courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Daylight reaches the concourse through the diamond shaped steel and glass roof construction, and while the lower part is nearly transparent and admits a great deal of light, the upper part serves as protection against direct solar radiation.

Photo courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
The barrel vault roof conveys a dynamic impression, not least because its steel elements vary in width and depth from the bottom to the top, and are woven together. Escalators and lifts are available for passengers and visitors to descend to the platforms.

This technically and structurally sustainable railway station illustrates a contemporary interpretation of the cathedrals of traffic from the heydays of railway travel.

Drawing courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Site Plan

Drawing courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners

Drawing courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Longitudinal Section

Drawing courtesy von Gerkan, Marg and Partners
Cross Section

Facts about Tianjin West Railway Station

Gross floor area

179,000 m2

von Gerkan, Marg and Partners (gmp)


Meinhard von Gerkan and Stephan Schütz with Stephan Rewolle

Project leader:

Jiang Lin Lin

Structural engineers:

schlaich bergermann und partner

Chinese partner practice:



Tianjin Ministry of Railway

Last updated: December 19, 2013

See also

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