With a residential culture modeled after the world’s greatest universities, the Duke Kunshan University campus environment encourages the exchange of ideas and continuous learning and growth in the classroom and beyond.
The campus blends traditional Chinese elements with advanced educational technology in a spacious, modern setting. Extensive aquatic elements, including an aquatic quadrangle at the center of campus, symbolize the region’s famous water towns and are integrated throughout the campus, while leading information technology and Telepresence systems provide instant connections to colleagues and classmates around the world.
Located within the Kunshan Yangcheng Lake Science Park, the first phase of the DKU campus includes classroom and research spaces, student and faculty residences, dining facilities, an executive conference center, and recreation and leisure spaces.
The school’s teaching programs are housed in the three-story building containing four tiered classrooms, an auditorium, a library, a dining room for students and conference participants, and a business center. A full-height central atrium “living room” serves as a campus-gathering place, emblematic of the school’s emphasis on collaboration and community. The atrium and roof terraces enjoy views of the lake to the west and the campus main quadrangle to the east.
The four-story Conference Center comprises 203 guest rooms, 20 suites and meeting spaces.
A three-story, 200-bed student residence with suites emulate the Unité model of Le Corbusier—each suite is entered from the second floor, with shared living on that level and four bedrooms (all singles) and two shared bathrooms above or below.
The Faculty Residence is a two-story building that has 16 units of faculty apartments, each with a live/work loft concept.
The Service Building serves as a large data center and also includes security offices, maintenances, and administration offices.
The three-story Innovation Center will be equipped with a library, classrooms and team rooms.
Resilient Campus Design:
Designed by the internationally renowned architect, Gensler, the campus seeks to be a model of sustainable development, reflective of the natural and cultural context of the Jiangnan region.
- Native Wetlands: The 201-acre site has a high water table, so designers elected to preserve 40 acres as community gardens—much in the way that Duke’s original campus in Durham is carefully nested into a forest. As the Durham campus is noted for its Sarah P. Duke Gardens, the Kunshan campus highlights its regional geography by featuring landscaped gardens, wetlands and waterways.
- Energy Efficiency: The campus design’s use of daylight, solar shading, passive cooling, and natural flood control is informed by centuries of experience dealing with the opportunities and challenges of Kunshan’s climate and terrain.
- A Walkable Campus: Roadways are on the perimeter to create a pedestrian-friendly central campus with walking paths and bridges connecting the buildings to one another.
- Regional Connections: Kunshan’s location between Shanghai and Suzhou allows easy access to these major metropolitan centers by highways and high-speed railway.