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Eiffel Tower Gustave Eiffel

Perceptions of the tower have changed over time in regards to its purpose and contextual surroundings. The tower originally designed as a temporary installation for the Exposition Universelle in 1889 to celebrate the centenary of the French Revolution, has evolved over time to become the landmark and icon of not only the city of Paris, but also of France. From what was initially seen as a structure of controversy by the general public, to being perceived as a case of innovation to engineers and architects, and presently as a symbol for the “city of love�. This attachment of romantic notions to the wrought iron structure shows how fluid the meaning and original design intent of the structure can vary in regards to its contextual surroundings and discourse generated through time. If the tower had been static in meaning, it would have become obsolete and would most likely cease to exist today.


This relates to the Gateway project in that our design shouldn’t have a static meaning, it should initiate discourse, potentially be controversial, and perceptions changeable depending on the user’s interaction with the Gateway. It is because of such discourse and different perceptions that allowed the Eiffel Tower to adapt over time to its surroundings, and similarly we want to achieve this for the Gateway design, allowing the Gateway to grow and evolve with its contextual surroundings.

Church of Light

Tadao Ando

The discourse between architecture & natural light occurs inevitably, with or without human interference. Through the manipulation of filtering of this natural light through different materials, we are able to create a discourse with the space user, evoking a response, whether it is emotional, spiritual, intellectual or physical. Through the manipulation of sunlight through particular perforations in the walls & specific orientation of the building, Ando created an “aura” symbolizing God’s presence, whilst the materialistic quality of the reinforced concrete served as a reminder to the congregation of their own secular state. From this precedent, we are able to draw from it the specific placement of perforations along surfaces to create a sense of interaction with the space user through the filtering of light and the manipulation of certain conventional materials such as concrete, in regards to achieving a sense of interconnectedness through the materiality of the Gateway project.



Port Authority Bus Terminal: Greg Lynn


The Port Authority Bus Terminal is a prime example of how computational design can be used to translate intangible information into an architectural response. It was used to map the movement of people and population at the site to determine the parameters of the design and aid in the development of the structure. It shows that computational design software is not just a medium of representation but also a tool for form generation. “The dynamic simulation takes into consideration the effect of forces on the motion of an object or a system of objects especially forces that do not originate within the system itself.� - Branko Kolarevic This approach to design could be used to great affect in the Western Gateway project. By being able to represent intangible forces and information, we will be able to transform it from a mere roadside sculpture to an installation with true meaning and relevance to its context. It will enable the exploration of an unique set of forms that will help to create a design that is representative of Wyndham as a fast growing international City.


A research project by CITA Knippers Helbig Engineers and


Through the use of computational design, the research team was able to design an intricate structural element to which a “skin� was able to mold over. The computational design of the structural element through CAD programs pushed the limitations of otherwise conventional materials, such as timber; which is originally used to create rigid linear structures, to create instead a more fluid abstract form. This idea of morphing the materiality of conventional materials could potentially be explored in our design for the Western Gateway, utilizing familiar materials indigenous to the area, yet bringing about new meanings and forms through the use of computational design.


As modern day designers become increasingly computer savvy, there will be relatively less significance on the techniques engaged but rather on the use of these techniques to optimize performance and result of the final design. The computation of design as such, is not only a technique, but most importantly a modern TOOL used to solve present and future challenges. Therefore, computational design has brought about a paradigm shift in design representation and thinking from the static object model to vibrant system models from the linear to abstract designs.


AGENT SENSE Instructed by Ezio Blasetti _Encoded Matter

This project was to create a digitally enabled mesh which responded to the dimensions and existing conditions of the site; the Bartlett School’s Wates House (Architecture School). Through the process of writing a specific algorithm (using Grasshopper scripting) that allowed points of the site to interact with a mesh surface concentrating on the façade of the building, the design team was able to script an almost organic structure; which was referential not only to itself, but also to specific allocated points on the chosen site (the façade). “The resulting surface treatment is a high resolution mesh, providing complexity, detail and practical protection from the elements…the solid block that was once Wates House becomes more human and a representation of the humans existing within: diverse, weird whimsical and maybe a little crazy.” - Ezio Blasetti The concept behind this project is similar to that of the Western Gateway project, where the focus has been placed on the Bartlett’s building’s entrance: a high traffic area, which was often ignored as a place of interest. Therefore, this project can be used as a significant predecessor of the Western Gateway design, as an example of how digitally enabled designs are able to not only attract and interact with visitors, but also become a representation of the technological advancement of the City of Wyndham.


Without knowing what Grasshopper combinations could lead to an outcome that offers rich potential for representation, the team inevitably has to undergo the process of “search”, which is in line with one of Kalay’s proposition of design methods. This implies the assumption that suitable candidate solutions exist within the current pool offered by the known possible combinations of Grasshopper operations. Hence the team tested each combination from its start to the very end, examining the final outcome before drawing a logical conclusion to a combination’s success or failure. New combinations were tested only after a conclusion was made for the combination being tested at the moment. This falls into the sub-division of “depth first” approach under the method of “search”, as stated by Kalay. With continuous trial and error, the team gradually understands the potential and characteristics of each Grasshopper operation and progressively gains the ability to select components that are more likely to generate more powerful and sophisticated outcome. In the end, the team was able to choose more promising options for further development among a wide range of candidate solutions. Here, the team adapts another method of search – “best first”, which is also defined under Kalay’s view of design methods.


Reverse Engineering


Kumiko Inui

We selected to reverse-engineer the Dior Ginza facade as we believed that it had the more interesting concepts that we wished to investigate. This is because at this stage we had a decided to focus on the use of perforation and layering as our method to design. To achieve the desired result the image sampler and surface divide cut definitions were utilised. These gave the outer layer of the building, with the interior simply being a printed image of the design at a smaller scale. Through this method of reverse engineering, we were able to achieve an understanding of the potential uses for these techniques to create optical illusions. The main aim of this process was to try and recreate the Moire affect. This was achieved and helped to direct our design proposal to the use of optical illusions. Further to this, we experimented with how whe the size of the circles are changed, there will be a dramatic change in effect. This method of approach will help in future work as it will allow for a more integrated approach to design. It allows for the quickl analyses and refinement of design.

Design Intent A design, which would adapt to the changing context of its surroundings over time, whilst representing the rapid growth of Wyndham as an international city through exploring the interconnections between Wyndham and its sister cities: Chiryu, Japan and Costa Mesa, California.

Architecture has long been more than just the built object; it represents and communicates ideas as well. In view of the discourse of architecture’s “multiple reading” and “ability to interact”, we propose that computational design would be the most powerful response to the challenge of developing an exciting, eyecatching proposal for Wyndham that inspires and enriches the municipality. The emergence of digital morphogenesis in architectural design, after all, is already challenging the practice and norm of the profession, offering unimaginable design potential ranging from an unprecedented non-linear approach, to the finding of fluid form and solution, and to the generation of complex relationships. All these innovations have pushed the boundaries of design space to an unprecedented dimension. New ways of designing space, affect and experience are rendered possible only with contemporary design and technologies. However, it is not just the extravagant outcome that makes computational design an obvious choice. The engagement of latest design approaches is also the most solid and direct response to the most highlighted statement in the design brief – generation of new, inspiring and brave ideas that advance discourse.


Group EOI  
Group EOI  

Annie Du, James Johnstone, Terence Ho, Peter Wang