Taichung Convention Center – MAD Architects

Taichung Convention Center – MAD Architects

Year: 2009
Location: China
Typology: Office, Hotel, Retail, Exhibition, Convention
Scale: 216,161 sqm
Status: Design in-progress
Beijing based MAD Architects has recently completed the design for the Taichung Convention Center, its first project in Taiwan commissioned by the Taichung city government.

The design is conceived as a continuous weave of architecture and landscape that blurs the boundary between architecture, public space and urban landscape, proposing a futuristic vision based on the East's naturalistic philosophy. This project inherits Chinese architecture's long-standing attitude towards holistic integration and order of space. It employs the Eastern philosophy of a harmonized synthesis between human and nature. In the face of the project's enormous scale, the architecture no longer exists as a series of individual blocks, but instead is unified as a collective form. The resultant space enclosed within comes into focus, in a natural order emerging from air, wind and light, fostering a resonance between human and nature.

The city of Taichung requires a metropolitan landmark that goes beyond the local to renew urban life and redefine the cultural landscape of the city, that, through unique architectural concepts and proposing a new kind of architectural philosophy, launch Taichung into the arena of world class cultural cites. Today's landmark buildings are no longer characterized by mere considerations for height, but have turned to cultural inquiries into the future and nature. More than making visual impacts, landmark buildings should foster public recreation,** and inspire communication and imagination.

The site for this project is inherently characterized by an energy-rich landscape. Under its calm surface, topological potentials await to be discovered and expressed as urban landmarks. On the one hand, the architecture's crater-shaped formation and resulting rotundas are the outcome of found site conditions. On the other hand, it simultaneously shapes and influences the surrounding environment, opening up a dialogue between architecture and landscape. The surface of the 'mountains' is a high-tech, eco-friendly pleated skin system. The smocking-like envelope provides air flow to the building while keeping energy consumption at a minimum by utilizing solar energy.

The open courtyards that connect the individual 'mountains' are integrated into a natural sequence of outdoor spaces. Like the quest for a harmonic coexistence between people and nature exemplified by Forbidden City and ancient Chinese gardens, this project seeks greater meaning in its non-material qualities, spaces encircled with the upmost naturalistic spirit. A single tree, a patch of bamboo, or a pond become central figures of the space. This approach to sustainable development is based not on technology, but on traditional philosophy and aesthetics.

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