URBANUS was awarded with the 1st prize on the competition for the new integrated teaching building at the Chinese University in Hong Kong. Entitled “Windows on Community,” the building strives the link the two parts of the campus together, while also providing a visual connection with those who approach. Through the implementation of a Moebius Strip, the design mixes the inner circulation of the building with the exterior circulation of the streets. “This loop of circulation and urban internal street for us is not only a vertical linkage but more the heart of the college-a lively community space at the center of it all,” explained the architects.
More about the University after the break.
Within the building, there are many different options users can take to reach a destination. Different stairs lead to different lobbies, peaceful outdoor settings, or academic centers. Balconies to the sides of the main stairs offer glimpses of people studying or socializing with the harbor and mountains set as the backdrop.
The building has 3 cores that provide support for the upper floors. These cores are fully visible in the building and are covered with unique materials, art or different surfaces, “thereby turning them into addresses for the 3 buildings and also easy landmarks for orientation.” The lower floors can remain column free because the spaces rest between the four staircases and follow the slope of the street. This open plan provides enough flexibility to allow the programs to be mixed or shifted depending upon the university’s needs.
Copper was chosen at the material for the building as it seemed to reflect the site conditions with the green and Northwest side clad in green copper, and the more sloped stone side to the southeast in red brown copper.
Architect: URBANUS Team: Design Director : Liu Xiaodu, Meng Yan | Project Manager: Matthias Wolff, Fu Zhuoheng | Designers: Yang Qili, Lihui, Ding Yu, Thomas Joshua Roberts Location: Hong Kong, China Year: Competition in 2007 (2 Phases, 1st prize), unbuilt Size: 40, 200 sq. m. Client: Chinese University of Hong Kong Collaborator: Cypress consultant International Ltd.