Architects: Rocco Design Architects
Location: Hong Kong, China
Design Team: Rocco Yim, Bernard Hui, Henry Ho, Dennis Chan, Boris Lo, Sophia Ip, Lai Wai Man, Mary Ching
Project area: 5,465 sqm
Project year: 2003 – 2008
Photographs: Rocco Design Architects
The Teaching Complex marks a new phase of the CUHK Campus Redevelopment. Located near the University’s Central Campus main entrance, this new 12,000-square-metre building aims to establish a new urban dialogue with the existing Tin Ka Ping Building to the east to redefine the gateway to the existing Campus. As the new architecture replaces the original Li Dak Sum Building of the old cluster, an opportunity for re-organization of the campus spaces has become possible.
Seizing on this, the design of the new teaching complex ambitiously takes on the sloping site to reconfigure a new 3-dimensional pedestrian circulation experience evolved from the natural topography. A monumental canopy signifying the new building entrance is prominently juxtaposed, which aligns itself with the axis adjacent to Tin Ka Ping Building to channel major circulation flows from the Central Mall. A new footbridge from the 3/F of the building spans over the Central Avenue and connects with the United Campus further up the hill. Multiple entry points on the first four levels and at 3/F are strategically positioned to weave the existing circulation flows through the building fabrics more intricately.
The Teaching Complex is not a standalone building but manifests an embracing attitude in its urban-tectonic structure. Such attitude is synonymous with the openness in research and learning. The notion of accessibility and openness are key factors for knowledge transfer and human interactions quintessentially important in an academic environment. In reality, amongst the office space for staff, seminar rooms, laboratories, and lecture halls this building provides a response that has surpassed the original brief: the Teaching Complex aims to provide spaces of various scales and ambience to promote different kinds of students and staff interactions outside traditional classrooms, where modernity of teaching is felt.