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Garden 5 Tool / DeStefano Partners

  • Architects: DeStefano Partners
  • Location: Seoul, South Korea
  • Architect:  DeStefano Partners, Samoo Architects & Engineers 
  • Project Year: 0
  • Photographs: Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers 

Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers  Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers  Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers  Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers 

From the architect. Originally called the Dongnam Distribution Center (DDC), the recently renamed Garden 5 Tool complex is a mega-shopping center in Seoul, South Korea.  The structure was designed by DeStefano Partners of Chicago, Illinois in conjunction with Samoo Architects & Engineers as the associate architect.

Garden 5 Tool is located on a 258,720sf site along the north bank of the Jang-Ji  River in Seoul.  With over 1,500 shops on site, the complex tips the scales at nearly 3 million square feet of space and consolidates a variety of industrial goods retailers that were formerly sited throughout the central city.  In addition to the retail component of the program, Garden 5 Tool also contains a supplementary facility containing a fitness center, food court, and office space.

Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers 
Courtesy of  Samoo Architects & Engineers 

According to the architect, the building design was driven by a number of physical influences, including the structure’s proximity to various transportation hubs.  A highway that runs diagonally along the west and south façades creates a high visibility factor, while Garden 5 Tool’s proximity to the Seoul Airport restricts building heights in the area to 50.7m (about 10 stories).  The resulting architectural scheme is a 15-story structure, 10 of which are above grade.  Above-grade program includes four levels of retail space, three levels of parking and storage, and another three levels of supplementary facility spaces at the top of the building.  Below-grade program accommodates 1,800 parking spots over three levels and two more levels of additional retail space.

The building features a structure comprised of precast concrete and steel, clad in sheet aluminum, tinted insulating glass, and ceramic tile panels to create a visual dynamism in keeping with the dynamic nature of the adjacent stream.  The building’s aluminum cladding was conceptualized to echo the water’s curving path and perpetual fluidity.

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite:"Garden 5 Tool / DeStefano Partners" 21 Sep 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>