TJAD Rurban Studio - Erlitou Site Museum of the Xia Capital, from a photo of an archaeological excavation site
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Erlitou Site Museum of the Xia Capital, from a photo of an archaeological excavation site

TJAD Rurban Studio

Culture  /  Completed
TJAD Rurban Studio

Erlitou Site Museum of the Xia Capital is an important cultural project for the protection of Erlitou site. It’s also an exhibition center for the study of China's early state history. Two materials, raw earth and copper, which are most closely related to Erlitou culture, are selected as the most unique architectural features in design. The total amount of earth completed construction is more than 4000 m³, which makes Erlitou Site Museum the largest single rammed earth building in the world now.

In order to realize the real integration with the surrounding rural space, we put forward an overall design that can link the rural development and site protection.

First of all, it is necessary to ensure that the palace site, main road and central axis in the key site protection area are fully displayed, so as to maintain the status quo of the villages, improve the infrastructure and minimize the impact on the daily life of the villages.

Secondly, there is a typical traditional village on the west side of the museum, in which more than 30 traditional residences and a famous temple are preserved. Based on this, we surveyed these houses in the village, and made a plan to integrate the service area of the site park and the traditional village to build it into a characteristic town. The architectural design of the museum is integrated with the planning of site park and tourist center. These three parts have been synchronously designed and completely put into effect.

The initial concept of design comes from a photo of an archaeological excavation site: the winding land presents an irregular state of extension, revealing the hidden internal code of this ancient cultural site. The site of the museum is located in the farmland about 500 meters southwest of Erlitou site. The whole architecture respects the original state of the great ruins in the countryside, trying to create a broad, deep and quiet atmosphere. Taking the landscape image of "terrace" as the prototype, the building rises gradually from 11m to 24m, growing together with the land.

In response to the archaeological site, the space sequence is organized with the concept of "layer", and the internal space is open enough. With courtyard and inner court as the core, it radiates strongly to the surrounding space. With natural light as the medium, the functional spaces with different scales and forms are organized together in an asymmetric way. Finally, a progressive space sequence and functional combination are developed to achieve an amorphous state.

We insist on sticking to the natural way of construction, using local materials and choosing appropriate construction methods. The earliest bronze workshop in China was found in Erlitou site, and a number of large-scale palace sites built by rammed earth were found here. These archaeological discoveries help us make a firm decision on the construction level. The combination of raw earth and copper, two materials most closely related to Erlitou culture, is the first choice.

The rammed earth construction of this project faces five major technical problems: structural system checking, detailed structure design, material performance optimization, test data collection and construction scheme design.

A. Aiming at the problem of high stiffness of rammed earth wall, the main structure is optimized as frame-shear wall structure. The anti-seismic calculation of rammed earth wall is carried out separately according to non-structural components, so that the deformation of the wall and the main structure can match.

B. The thickness of rammed earth wall is only 400mm. Dealing with the contradiction of height-thickness ratio, the constructional column and its own support system of rammed earth wall are improved. The lateral support of steel structure is added to realize 12m super-high rammed earth wall.

C. Add concrete filled square steel pipe constructional column and concrete lintel at the opening of rammed earth wall to solve the structure of various spans. A full-length shrinkage groove is set corresponding to the structural column to effectively avoid disorderly cracking. The waterproof problem of exterior rammed earth wall is solved by concrete plinth and copper coping.

D. The biggest difference between modern and traditional rammed earth is the scientific grading of materials and the introduction of modern ramming machines. In material proportioning, a series of original scale material and structure experiments have been carried out. Adjust the mix proportion of soil, sand and stone, and add plant fiber in each cubic meter of mixture, so that the grading curve of the mixture is completely in the optimal distribution range of rammed earth building.

E. In the whole ramming process, 3.6m long and 0.75m high are used as the basic module unit, and the light-weight and high-strength aluminum magnesium alloy formwork system is adopted. It is easy to move up layer by layer for reuse, which is a good guarantee for the flatness of the rammed wall.

At present, Erlitou Site Museum of the Xia Capital and the site park have been open to the public. It has received millions of visitors in one year, which has greatly promoted the social and economic development of local villages. The new planning structure has taken shape. The vendors gathered at the end of the park bridge, the villagers dancing in the square and the old people sitting on the porch pillars basking in the sun all indicate that the museum has totally become a part of their daily life.


 Luoyang, Henan
 Luoyang Culture Heritage Bureau
 31781 mq
 Li Li
 TJAD Rurban Studio
 Henan Guoan Construction Group Co., Ltd
 Zhu Handong


Lead Architect: Li Li
Design Team: Wang Wensheng, Gao Shan, Zhou Jun, Hao Jing, Ye Wen, Kong Weiwei, Liu Haojin, Liang Yang, Liu Chang
Interior Architect: Li Li, Hao Jing, Zhang Suzhi, Zhang Gong
Landscape Architect: Li Li, Liu Chang
Rammed Earth Wall Design: Mu Jun, Zhou Tiegang, Liang Zengfei, Zhou Jian, Gao Zhipeng
Site Park Planning: Li Li, Liu Wenjia
Resident Architect: Hao Jing


#Finalist #China  #Copper  #Exhibition  #Copper-clad roof  #Rammed earth  #Luoyang, Henan  #TJAD Rurban Studio 

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