Hanil Visitors Center & Guest House / BCHO Architects

© Yong Gwan Kim

Architect: Byoungsoo Cho
Location: 77, Pyeongdong-ri, Maepo-eup, Danyang-gu, Chungbuk,
Project Team: Nicholas Locke, Youngjin Kang, Taehyun Nam, Greg Hale, Seunghyun Kim
Consultants: Mark West, C.A.S.T. University of Manitoba
Site area: 3,957 sqm
Gross floor area: 648.9 sqm
Total floor area: 1,031.2 sqm
Design Year: 2007-2008
Construction Year: 2008-2009
Photographs: Yong Gwan Kim

floor plans

The Purpose of this project is to educate visitors about the potential for recycling concrete. In Korea concrete is the primary building material so it is imperative that we begin to re-use, the otherwise waste, concrete as buildings come down and are replaced. The Information Center is an example of how to re use this material in different types of construction, casting formwork types as well as re-casting techniques. Concrete has been broken and recast in various materials creating both translucent and opaque tiles. The displays will continue to evolve and change at the Information Center as new techniques are developed. The gabion wall and fabric formed concrete which constitute the main façades of the building, was erected first, and the concrete left over from it was recycled in the gabion cages, on the rooftop for insulation from sun, and as a landscape material at the street and around the factory.

© Yong Gwan Kim

The site is located to the westernmost part of the factory, adjacent to Mt. Sobaek National Park. The existing land had been changed much to facilitate the movement of trucks to the cement factory. First of all, we tried to restore the damaged original mountains and forest. In order to revive the landscape, we brought in earth to fill the courtyard between the two buildings. The flow of the mountains from the west leads to the reception and cafeteria in the inner courtyard of the building. In the in-between spaces we allowed people to experience the mass of the building while watching the building shift around it’s central courtyard.

© Yong Gwan Kim
© Yong Gwan Kim

While following the linear placement and movement of land and earth, we came up with ideas for the new building façade. We applied canvas-like concrete walls to the east façade, evoking images of the adjacent forest. There are four openings in the eastern wall and long vertical windows have been created in their in-between spaces. Through the windows, one can see how concrete is produced at the factory. Behind the two larger openings, one can see the courtyard of the Visitors’ Center and the cafeteria next to the courtyard, which is encircled by a water garden.

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Hanil Visitors Center & Guest House / BCHO Architects" 12 Aug 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 21 Sep 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=72484>


  1. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Given the client is a concrete/cement company,
    I think using the same material in various ways (a rough board formed, a fabric formed, a crushed concrete in gabion) to show the different aspects of the material was very smart, adequate approach.

  2. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Any clue in how to get such form & finish surface…looks like pouring concrete in a plastic bag!!!!

    • Thumb up Thumb down +1

      Hi, yes , is almost like that. we worked in this project at CAST, you can see more woks related with fabric form technology in our web site:


      this technique reveals the wet fluid nature of concrete….and when you treat it like that , there is no need to make it look like wood or a rigid material. concrete can be sensual as well.


  3. Thumb up Thumb down +1

    Responding to moh lofty: I believe there is a metal wire frame to be filled with concrete pieces in order to construct the wall. For the outside stairs the same wire frame applies at the ends of each step so that it could hold the concrete pieces together.
    My favorite piece in this building is the concrete interior stairs. The fact that it was constructed in its simplest form makes the stairs so beautiful.

  4. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Thanks Ece ..Thanks Ronnie
    hope you guys are still alive to see this reply !!

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