Architect Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has won an international competition to design a new finance and marina district for Sri Lanka’s largest city Colombo with a masterplan created in collaboration with Grant Associates.
Backed by the China Communication Construction Company (CCCC), the scheme will see the transformation of 269 hectares of reclaimed land next to Colombo’s Central Business District (CBD), and aims to create a landmark destination for commerce, tourism, and culture in South Asia.
Featuring a marina, canals and a sequence of public parks, the masterplan will feature a ‘new skyline’ of skyscrapers that is visible from different viewpoints across the city.
In addition, walkways and a central plaza will extend around the edges of the new marina, creating a varied public realm that connects to Colombo’s main port and the historic Galle Face Green recreation ground.
Inspired by Sri Lanka’s geography, ecology and tropical climate, SOM conceived the Port City masterplan concept with Grant Associates acting as consultant landscape architect.
SOM and Grant Associates’ vision was selected as the unanimous winner by an international jury, which commented that the scheme demonstrated ‘exceptional sensitivity to the ecological and cultural context of Sri Lanka’.
The new district is expected to complete in 2041.