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Exhibits archive

Mogao Caves Tourist Center and Dunhuang Research Institute

Companies: China Architecture Design and Research Group, Cui Kai Studio

Project Location: Dunhuang, Gansu Province, People’s Republic of China

Industry: Architecture, Engineering & Construction

Maintaining history and culture through freeform architectural design

The Mogao Caves in Dunhuang is a famous Chinese historic and cultural site, as well as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Conceptual design

The new building design simulates the natural desert landscape and the shape of the murals, borrowing ideas from existing mountain caves to reveal a respect for history and the environment.

Design development

Architects used Revit Building Information Modeling (BIM) data to create the 2D construction documents. Because of parametric components and bidirectional associativity, any change made to the model was reflected across the 2D drawings.


The creative design brought several challenges to the traditional way of modeling. With the help of Revit conceptual and parametric modeling tools, architects were able to create the complex freeform massing building model and generate 2D drawings of plans, sections, and elevations.