Untitled Design (Cultural Centre) by Koon Park Lim
2016 - 2017, Golden A' Architecture, Building and Structure Design Award Winner
Hwa Chong International School, being the oldest Chinese institution in Singapore, historically has had, and continues today to have strong affinities to the Chinese culture. We had noticed, during one of the first site visits, that the existing alumni block exudes an old Chinese charm. It was evident that this was due to the liberal adoption of typically traditional Chinese architectural elements adorning the building. Having observed this, it became key for us to explore ways in which such Chinese motifs can be reinterpreted and reimagined in the context of contemporary architecture.
The project is imagined as a Chinese landscape painting, one of the most important art forms in Chinese culture. The key to a Chinese landscape painting is its overall composition of background, mid-ground, and foreground, creating a more layered visual experience. With the compositional techniques of a Chinese landscape painting as the driving force behind the architecture, the project became an exploration into translating a purely visual pleasure into a functional and experiential built form.
Design Challenges
The key challenge was working around the limits of the existing structure to fulfil the demanding programmatic requirements the brief called for (i.e. an indoor sports hall, a 500-seater auditorium, and an alumni Board of Directors lounge), while at the same time, generating the maximum amount of open space for landscaping. The approach was to stack the spaces strategically and situate the garden central to the blocks, allowing both blocks to have visual accessibility to the garden.
Production Technology
Materials - Hot dipped galvanised and spray painted mild steel fascia - Composite timber screens - Pebble wash floor - Natural stone, including grey granite -Timber look-alike homogenous tiles -Timber parquet flooring - Carpet tiles
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