inFORM studio wins international design competition for highly sustainable project
The city of Korla has announced that inFORM studio has been selected as the winner of an international design competition for the Civic Cultural Exhibition and Activity Center in Korla, China. It will be a symbol of a progressive future for the region of Xinjiang. The conceptual proposal embraces the master plan vision for an axial relationship of cultural buildings and a strong east/west pedestrian linkage through the site; but it also responds intelligently to the climate, geological heritage, ecology, and contextual views and relationships.
Korla is in a unique location situated above the Taklamakan Desert and at the foothills of a mountain range south of Lake Bosten. Ecological and geological extremes practically co-exist within Korla yielding a tremendous opportunity to exemplify both conditions as part of the project morphology. Water is important to the region in general despite the abundance within Lake Bosten itself. Special care is given to the utilisation of water through rainwater capture, grey-water recycling, storm-water retention, and its use within the geothermal system.
Climatically, the building responds morphologically to the many attributes that characterise the region including, dryness, large daily temperature fluctuations, prevalent sunshine, and consistent ground temperatures below the surface. The abundant sunshine is a tremendous asset to the reduction of energy through the proper use of daylighting.
Additional energy can be saved by the use of trombe walls and a geothermal system bringing an earthy stability to the variable temperatures throughout the day. Providing a thick building skin with a perforated quality takes advantage of these conditions. The overall building form is reminiscent of the mountain strength that is so powerful within the region with a human scale of a lotus flower pattern that is used a strategy of panellising the façade as well as perforating the exterior skin for daylighting.
The overall reduction in energy required to facilitate mechanical operations provides opportunities of southern oriented building integrated photovoltaic panels to contribute more significantly to the percentage of energy production. Clean water, clean air and an insightful respect for the regional ecology are some of the tangible benefits of this design for the Civic Cultural Exhibition and Activity Center. Moreover, the powerful architectural statement will become a symbol for this commitment to a sustainable future.