City Planning Exhibition Center – HCMC (Vietnam)

18000 m2

Hô-Chi-Minh-City (Vietnam)

Under construction

Construction of the city's exhibition and information center in the heart of the Thu Thiem Peninsula

People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City

Design team

DE-SO lead architect / ARDOR local architect / RFR VN str / ICE mep / ASA lighting

Construction cost
15 M€ HT

International competion First prize 2012


A public information center for residents and tourists alike about urban development of the Thu Thiem Peninsula as well as of the city in general.
The project includes exhibition spaces, theatres, classrooms, office and outdoor green spaces.

The City Planning Exhibition Center is directly attached to the Thu Thiem peninsula, Ho Chi Minh City’s new urban area.

The design proposal of the French architectural firm DE-SO was awarded first prize for the International Concept Design Competition on November 2012. The building construction site started in December 2015. The construction gross floor area is over 18.000 m² and the construction budget of about 30 million USD. It is located in front of the Saigon river, across from the historic city center, by the Thu Thiem Central Plaza also designed by DE-SO. The building will be used as a place for exhibitions of architecture and major regional urban planning information. It is also a place for meeting and networking for professionals, local residents and tourists.

The building is easily recognizable from Thu Thiem. This is the peninsula’s first important public building, a place for exchange with governmental policies, urban planning, architecture news for developpers, designers and contractors of new urban areas in the future. With 5 floors, beside the exhibition program, the building is also a place to hold related professional events with large spaces and an auditorium of more than 200 seats. Also, a part of the top level is specifically designed to accommodate the office of the city’s Planning Information Center.

Building form is modern and simple, featuring two volumes inclined towards each other, to create a large triangular atrium. The main building facade is inclined towards the Central Plaza with a LED media screen displaying informations, and acts as a large sun shading for balconies with planted trees behind. The building envelope is made of white zinc material, which is sustainable and suits the tropical heat and humidity. The ground level is covered with glass curtain walls, to allow passers-by to see indoor exhibitions. The basement includes parking space, technical areas, canteen, storage and building maintenance.

Escalators are centrally located to ensure the convenient movement between floors and to separate the exhibition spaces. Open public spaces are located on the ground. The upper floors are more private and have wider views over the City.



The museum and information center is designed to be an exemplary and iconic project for the future business district.
The building has a media facade that can display a variety of program to the public across the grand plaza.
The project takes into consideration the tropical climate and optimises energy consumption. It is a green building with Lotus certification.

Exhibition space reveals the identity of area

Building visitors need to keep the image of their visit to Ho Chi Minh City: architecture and its container must be harmonious and consistent.

The building’s main facade symbolizes a gigantic post card, carrying the city’s images and messages.

The building’s triangular atrium, which can be easily recognized from a distance, helps visually connecting the programs on each floor and controling the sunlight admittance into the interior.

Balconies are designed with planted trees which help the building to be protect from direct sunlight and rain as well as a good ventilation. Trees are always an integrated part of the site thus they are used to partially show the local identity.

The entire building acts like a filter between the urban and the natural, the common and the private, daylight and artificial light, large scale and small details.

The building, thus, has created its own attraction from a distance, a memorial logo for the tourists: a post card representing the City.

The building is designed with the consideration for indoor exhibitions content. This place must clearly shows the city’s direction for cultural, social and even political aspects.

Architecture and its contents must be well linked. The building is an interconnecting object of urban, temporal, spatial and natural elements. Permanent and periodical exhibition spaces help to formulate visiting routes and creating meetings and professional knowledge-exchanging spaces.

Spaces are designed to be opened, flexible in use to meet various needs of local residents, professional organizations, events and conferences all day and night.