Rocco Design Architects created a vertical church, on a challenging site in Wan Chai District, Hong Kong. The Wesleyan House Methodist Church, with its 11,000m² program, sits on a tight 800m² plot, making it inevitable to go up and generate a skyscraper structure.
In a very busy scene, at the corner of Queen's Road East – a major four-lane road, and Kennedy Road, the tower integrates chapels, activity halls, social service floors, and pastoral offices. The skyscraper creates a peaceful sanctuary within a busy urban fabric. With a major presence in the city’s skyline, the building slants “gently and subtly from the base to the top to project its image as a religious institution”. On the top floor, a sky chapel offers panoramic views on the harbor and the surrounding hills.
The different functions of the construction are distributed to assure the diverse vocations of the building, working, living, and worshiping. In fact, the congregation hall sits above the main sanctuary, and church offices and pastoral residences are on adjacent vertical floors, creating easy access between them.
The exterior design creates an entry sequence that transitions from the busy streetscape to the peaceful sanctuary within. The curved façade creates a strong statement on the streets, and generates a transitional passage, “ushering visitors into a public plaza that separates the church from the street”. The interior space engenders peaceful worship places, maximizing natural daylight on the altar.
Several innovative sustainability features are used in the tower, opting for casement windows instead of a curtain wall to minimize heat gain, large windows on the north- and south-facing facades to maximize daylight, and proper orientation to create natural ventilation. The project is expected to earn silver Hong Kong BeamPlus sustainability rating.
- Architects: Rocco Design Architects Associates Ltd
- Building Name: Wesleyan House
- Client: The Methodist Church, Hong Kong
- Location: 271 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
- Design Year: 2013
- Completion Year: 2018
- Design Team: Rocco Yim, CM Chan, Rebecca Chung, Freddie Hai, Charles Kung, Chu Yim Kwan, Adrian Kwan, Elaine Chow, Chan Pak Chuen.
- Total G.F.A.: 11,000 sq. m