POSTECH Marine Sciences Campus / SmithGroup

POSTECH Marine Sciences Campus / SmithGroup
© SmithGroup

SmithGroup shared their winning master plan proposal for a new Marine Sciences campus for the Pohang Institute of Science and Technology (POSTECH), in Uljin, South Korea. With the driving concept of a “wave” – a form common to both land and sea – the new design takes full advantage of the site’s natural beauty, weaving students throughout the campus and tying the man-made with the undulating topography.

More about the winning proposal after the break.

The new Marine Science campus, which will include space for ad­ministration, classrooms and research buildings, and residences for students and faculty,  is located 50 miles from the main campus in a secluded and hilly site on the east coast of Korea overlooking the East Sea.  Academic building are tucked into the natural topography of the south facing mountains, with residences further up the mountains connected via a winding road.  By running the buildings up the mountains’ sides, the valley floor is preserved as an ecological park.  Plus, the buildings benefit from the thermal mass of the mountain.

The formerly agricultural valley floor of the site will be reclaimed and revived to become an eco-park with water features, paths and walkways, and areas for passive recreation.  At the west end of the site, the agricultural reservoir will be transformed into a larger pond which will collect water from the hills, together with runoff from campus and residential development.   The water will gradually meander and flow along the natural slope of the valley floor, pooling naturally according to the topography toward the sea, and becoming filtered by the vegetation as it makes its way to the east, eventually emptying out into the sea.

© SmithGroup

Walkways will be placed throughout the eco park, raised slightly off the valley floor so as to allow a continuity of habitat. The walkways will lead to walking trails among the hills and areas along the valley floor where visitors can enjoy picnic and recreation spots.  An amphitheater will be located in the northern hillside in a central location within the campus, and will incorporate a stairway connecting the residential buildings to the eco park. The amphitheater will become a venue for outdoor concerts and entertainment, the view framed by the beauty of the southern hills.

© SmithGroup

A strong aspect of the proposal is the development of an often forgotten surface – the roofs.  In this scheme, the roofs’ treatment implies that of a continuous surface with different functional zones.  At the top, there’s a green living roof and where the roof curves toward the ground, it becomes an array of sunshades for moderating and reflecting sunlight to the building interior.   The design utilizes natural light as much as possible, illuminating the interior spaces and opening the rooms.  Skylights are carved into the academic buildings, bringing light straight through the building.

© SmithGroup

The winning proposal is a smart approach to not just sustainable design, but also an educational facility.  Programmatic elements are organized gracefully across the site, being sure to provide open space for recreation and relaxation.

Project Information:

© SmithGroup

Architect: SmithGroup/JJR

Associate Architect: POSAC

Design Team Members: Michael Kang, FAIA, LEED AP; Sven Shockey, AIA, LEED AP; Merrill St Leger Demian, AICP, LEED AP; Dayton Schroeter, AIA; Seong Koo Lee; Yuran Shen

Project Name/Address:  Postech Marine Sciences Campus Master Plan, Uljin, South Korea

Owner:   Pohang Institute of Science and Technology (Postech)

Completion Date: TBD

Total Project Area: 82 acres

620,000 gsf construction

About this author
Cite: Karen Cilento. "POSTECH Marine Sciences Campus / SmithGroup" 23 Sep 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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