Table-Landscape is a semi-propositional experimental underground development. The ground level must be spared for public green, while the underground levels may be used as creative offices and public service facilities to establish a unique creative community. Defining spaces through structures, our design proposal was a tribute to the classic structures in history. 31 buildings in varied forms could actually be attributed to six structural systems-core + beamless floor, frame structure + ordinary slab, non-covered colonnade, shear wall + beamless floor, single-point supporting + beamless floor, and multi-point supporting + beamless floor, presenting a varied and fascinating table-themed view on multiple levels and from multiple perspectives.
For Plot B4, how could we realize an effective and open underground area of over 7,000sqm, which is daylit and ventilated the same as ground level? And how could we incubate an alternative shared yard through design?
The flat level at ground grade is easily reminiscent of a smooth tabletop. What if it’s clustered and stacked with a number of tabletops in varied forms? Inspired by the idea of breaking up the whole into parts, we created a tabletop that appeared to be a plane as a whole, but actually looked very different from underneath, where one might notice that tables in different forms were constructed with different structures. By doing so, some unexpected spaces were created to dialogue with each other, and the gaps between tables allowed for the possibility of daylight and ventilation.
In this case, each underground singular building may be conceived as a table in abstract sense, with the tabletop as urban green and the space underneath it as below-grade levels. The occupied spaces of the buildings were designed and combined on top of the structure. Those free-standing, simple and differentiated tables together formed a nearly 4,800 sqm of double-level landscape at and below grade.
With a strategy of developing spatial relations out of structural diversity, we employed a basic grid module of 3m for control of the functional dimension and interweaved office spaces with such public functions as basketball courts, forest squares, stands and cafés to offer experience spaces and routes of diverse hierarchies. This was inspired by the void-solid relations of the interface between public street and buildings, namely the urban gray space as shown in the Nolli Map of Rome and the climatically responsive gray built spaces in Lingnan region.
Defining spaces through structures, our design proposal was a tribute to the classic structures in history. 31 buildings in varied forms could actually be attributed to six structural systems, i.e. core + beamless floor, frame structure + ordinary slab, non-covered colonnade, shear wall + beamless floor, single-point supporting + beamless floor, and multi-point supporting + beamless floor, presenting a varied and fascinating table-themed view on multiple levels and from multiple perspectives.
This was the second project of NODE for which the structural engineer was brought aboard at the schematic design phase to integrate the architecture with the structure.
Established in 2004, NODE Architecture& Urbanism is a leading boutique architectural practice in the Pearl River Delta region. Founded and led by Principal Architect, Doreen Heng LIU, NODE currently has about 20 architects and designers working on architectural projects across the country.
NODE argues for participation and inclusion of local interests as well as those from external sources. It focuses on the basics of architecture, attempting to maintain a critical position under the pressure of tremendous speed, quantity and size. NODE’s work makes a departure from the essential issues of building – site, program, space, materials and construction– and ventures into complexities of urbanism, nature, landscape, tradition and culture. With such considerations in mind, NODE consistently seeks cross-disciplinary collaborations. Besides architecture, NODE’s work also covers a range of projects from scale of furniture and lighting features to urban design.