Designed in 2006, and under construction since 2009, Toyo Ito & Associates much anticipated Taichung Metropolitan Opera House has finally officially opened. The design is notable for its cavernous, curved and folded interior forms, which produce a dramatic and complex section that is neatly resolved into a rectilinear exterior form. Taiwan-based photographer Lucas K Doolan visited the new Opera House to study its impressive internal spaces and its presence in the surrounding urban environment.
Taichung Mayor Lin Chia-lung has temporarily “pulled the plug” on Sou Fujimoto’s ambitious Taiwan Tower, saying he would rather pay a penalty for breaking the contract than spend an estimated NT$15 billion to realize the “problematic” project.
The Banyan tree-inspired tower was hoped to become the “Taiwanese version of the Eiffel Tower,” as well as a model for sustainable architecture by achieving LEED Gold with its energy producing features. Its steel superstructure, which proposed to hoist a triangular section of the Taichung Gateway Park’s greenbelt 300-meters into the air, intentionally had “no obvious form” and was to be perceived as a natural phenomenon.
Richard Meier & Partners has revealed their first ever building in Taiwan, a 163-meter apartment building close to the center of Taichung. Offering 110 apartments with views over Taichung City Hall, the Opera House, and the Convention Center, the tower is composed of two towers connected by a central circulation core. The north tower is the taller section, with a geometric appearance that responds to the more built-up area to the north of the building. The south tower, which faces an area of smaller-scale residential buildings, features an expressive facade of translucent glass.
The two Portuguese architects began the recently-completed project in 2009. The clubhouse includes spaces for recreational and cultural events and activities. The building demonstrates a rich relationship between the landscape and local culture.
Architects: Álvaro Siza and Carlos Castanheira
Local Partner | Project Management and Construction Supervision: Ho+Hou Studio Architects and Studio Base Architects
Images of the project—kindly shared with us by architecture photographer Fernando Guerra | FG+SG—can be seen after the break.
SANAA, it is. In attempts to separate itself from its sister cities, Taichung City has named SANAA, led by Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, winners of an international competition that intends to unite a newly formed city. As of December 2010, Taichung city executed a mega-merger that increased its population from 1 million inhabitants to 2.5 million, encompassing the skyscraping towers of downtown Taichung to the agricultural mountainside villages of Taichung County. As a result, the local government envisioned a new urban space that would place art at its core, celebrating the regions' disparate cultures.
With arts and culture at the core of Taichung’s urban identity, and the vision to lead in innovation and technology, this design proposal by RMJM seeks to bring together these significant attributes in a building emblematic of Taichung’s achievements and vision. Located at the corner of Taichung Gateway Park, the project becomes an urban oasis and a vital link between existing communities and future urban development, providing a social and cultural focus and an arrival gateway to the park. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Designed by SZA (Studio za arhitekturu), their Taichung City Cultural Center proposal is a complex space structure. With its ground plan being 50 x 50 m, their concept creates an energetic, self-sufficiency throughout the project through a system of a vertical accordion and through an exchange of functional storeys and sustainable construction storeys. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Designed by BAT (Bilbao Architecture Team), their proposal for the new City Cultural Center grows from the earth, with the strength of the sea and mountains, to show to the world how Taiwan is; how Taichung is. The design uses this strength to configure an astonishing landscape architecture able to project the cultural center internationally. More images and architects' description after the break.
The condition for this proposal by Hyunjoon Yoo Architects for the Taichung City Cultural Center competition is very unique and original since two distinct buildings, library and fine arts museum, should coexist in one site. For the architectural design that fulfills this exclusive condition, the architects applied the notion of "Taiji", the verity of yin and yang that has existed since the ancient era of Chinese history. In this new design, the spatial arrangement of library and art museum are planned to confront and interact at the same time, giving the positive effect to each other. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The proposal for the Taichung Cultural City Center by de Architekten Cie. is composed of a well-defined system of voids as the museum and the library are designed as a flexible structure to be able to follow frequent changes in museum and library philosophy. Lifts and escalators are built into both buildings to provide an indubitable vertical communication and an evident orientation for future visitors. More images and architects' description after the break.
Australia based Williamson Architects’ proposal for the City Cultural Center of Taichung, Taiwan aims to create a sculptural beauty that resurrects the romance of the architectural journey through a building. Driven by function, the building’s form is expressed in its own beauty to create not only a landmark public structure but also creating a catalyst drawing people and activity, beautifully connecting all strata of society. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Georges Batzios Architects + Sparch (Rena Sakellaridou and Morpho Papanikolaou) shared with us their proposal, titled 'Calligraphic-scapes,' for the Taichung City Cultural Center competition which stems from the origins of calligraphy. The rigorous transformation of knowledge, to be found in written language, is brought together with the poetic domains of art by means of calligraphy as the medium. As such, it brings together both the library and art museum into a new hybrid entity. More images and architects' description after the break.
Designed by TheeAe LTD., the main idea for their ‘Wooden Wave’ proposal for the Taichung City Cultural Center competition was driven by its elements in historical buildings which have had its form of curve, wooden structure, prolonged canopies and so on. In respect of the past architecture, they believe change or new is not a sole creation from nothing, but rather evolution from the past. More images and architects’ description after the break.
This Taichung City Cultural Center proposal by KAMJZ Architects aims to present the possibility of using local features to protect from the very location itself turning limiting factors into interesting project features. With an average annual precipitation of 2500 mm and the climate heavily influenced by the monsoon season Taiwan is a country which receives a lot of rainwater. Therefore, the architects are focusing on a local water management agenda, 'Water Damper Towers,' with their building as it’s showcase. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Designed by Maxthreads Architectural Design & Planning, their vision for the Taichung City Cultural Center is to create an unconventional and exceptional gathering space for visitors and inhabitants, animated by a public program. As the entry sequence into an urban fabric, this proposal reflects the new city’s philosophy of combining nature and innovative technology. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Designed by Kubota & Bachmann Architects, main purpose of their proposal for the Taichung City Cultural Center (TCCC) is the integration of the Gateway Park and the best practice implementation of green architectural policies. Aiming to be the new landmark of Taichung, together with the Gateway Park and the Taiwan Tower, the architectural ambition of the TCCC/Gateway Park is nothing less than creating a world-leading model in sustainable architecture. More images and architects' description after the break.
WOHA‘s traveling exhibition, ‘Breathing Architecture’, is on its way to Taichung, Taiwan after a successful run at the acclaimed Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) in Frankfurt. Taking place at the Taichung Info-Box July 26-September 23, the exhibition features concepts of open structures which embrace aspects of community and permeability of form in response to climate and nature.
LEEAD Consulting entered the recent Taichung Gateway Park International Competition and while their proposal did not win, they have shared their design for our review. Images of their proposal, LiquidScapes, and a brief narrative are after the jump.