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nus architecture 2011.2012 year one semester two


belle ong studio 11 mr ho tzu yin


site site analysis shophouse environment site analysis retreat

prelude

nature

urban

credit


prelude The transitory journey from understanding space and genius loci, to personal awareness within a spatial setting. tangible, a design arising from personal interpretations of the site. The task of considering not only sensations and experiences at a personal scale, but also the bigger picture: the environment, the need to focus on the context which encases the architecture itself.

The investigation into the surrounding landscape that forms the background tapestry for our architecture was then divided into two main focal points: nature versus Urban.


nature


environment To immerse oneself in nature, to feel and experience the environment in its entirety and to translate that into architecture. This was the task given, with MacRitchie Reservoir serving as the chosen site for investigation. With this exploration, it was crucial to survey the site and understand what occurs in the environment around us, in order to work with the vastness that is nature, that which exists analysis was carried out to document the variations, conditions and sensations gathered.


sun + shadow wind temperature plan section elevation

site analysis


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site plan 1:5000


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site captured on Google Earth sunshadow diagrams

From the above picture and the sunshadow diagrams, it can be seen that the site is situated in a clearing, i.e. little or no shade is provided. maximum amount of shade, in order to prevent overheating.


From testing with data loggers, it was recorded that there was generally low breeze occurrence with low wind speeds which occurred in the East to West direction, ranging from 0.10 to 1.50 m/s. Temperature at the site was subject to weather, due to the low amount of shading provided by the trees, with the clearing completely exposed. However, temperature is cooler in shaded areas, as well as areas nearer to vegetation. would be located near the base of the sloped clearing where there is most shade provided by the tree canopies. Locating it near the base would also provide a form of privacy for the retreat, away from the sight of joggers who frequent the trail right at the top of the slope, as well as tourists and hikers who may be walking through the nearby treetop walk.

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temperatures recorded at site


With the aid of a theodolite, site measurements were taken using a grid system.


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site plan


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site sectional elevation


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site sectional elevation


to design a retreat of maximum 30 m2 GFA Containing all necessary spaces & a specific program taking into consideration the lack of piped water & electricity

Retreat


One of the things I like about the site is the open sky and the sloped clearing. The beauty of the slope is such that one is able to see different things as he/she walks down the slope, and is able to feel a different sense of scale. Comparing how one feels while standing at the top of the slope and at the bottom of it, an overwhelming sense of height and power and looks up to the tree canopies and the sky. The quiet and calm ambience of the forest, coupled with such an openness, like a small breather in the midst of dense forest, led me to away from the city to store my books, for me to read whilst being able to appreciate nature. The challenge, however, was to design a space that would work with the incline of the slope. utilized as a medium for blurring the transition between the external walkway into the building, creating a form of spatial hierarchy and levels between private and public space.


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various process drawings


The bookcases in the retreat were then incorporated to form the structure itself, thus giving rise to the elongated form of the retreat. Interspersed between the shelves are windows, carefully placed such that one is able to sit on a step and read or pick a book off the shelves, whilst able to look outside and appreciate the views. To allow for natural daylighting, and to create a sense of openness to sky and to the forest whilst still preserving a sense of privacy within the retreat, a glass roof was created at an angle parallel to the slope and the staircase. One is able to view different portions of the forestscape while walking down the staircase, much like the feeling of walking down the actual slope. When one reaches the bottom of the stairs and looks up, the sky is in plain sight.


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section 1:20


Timber panels were used as cladding for a more natural touch. The rhythm of the timber panels with measured intervals, spanning from the walkway and covering the facade, helps to capture the sense of verticality of the trees, the density and closely-knitted forest, while also concealing the main entrance to the retreat.


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elevation 1:20


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roof plan 1:20 plan 1:20


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exploded axonometric 1:50


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site plan with retreat


urban


site In opposition to conserving that which is the natural environment, weaving architecture drawn from personal experiences and natural elements, the second exercise posed a different challenge in the form of designing within a built environment. Kampong Glam is a historical site, rich in culture with a closely-knit community. In order to design a shophouse, one had to be aware of existing architectural vernacular and the background of the site.


Retail Breakdown Sunpath Wind Site model Drawings

site analysis


different shops in the vicinity was conducted to better understand the background of the site, as well as the nature of the people who frequent the area. The shophouse unit, located at the corner turning from North Bridge Road into Jalan Pinang, is also near an eatery and a mosque.


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sunpath


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windrose


constructed to understand the various modes of access, and therefore approach to the site.


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jalan pinang street view


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north bridge road street view


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back alley street view


to design a shophouse for a family of four - a couple with a wife who loves to bake & 2 young children Containing all necessary private spaces & a specific public business - A private baking workshop configuration of spaces & conformation of structure to be determined by the decided brief, not neglecting materiality, the associated impacts on human experience and the urban environment

shophouse


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rain scale intimacy

The main concept for the shophouse came about during one of the site visits, when there was a slight drizzle. Whilst taking measurements, it dawned upon me that the entire street has a completely different atmosphere when it rains. There is a sense of calm that sets in, a quiet form of solitude in the refuge of the shophouses and the narrow me to discover the potential of developing the idea of “bringing the streets into the shophouse�. Walking along the back alley in between two rows of shophouses, one immediately feels small yet sheltered. This sense of scale and privacy that only comes with shophouses and their unique character was something I wanted to make full use of. Moreover, the narrow and kinked alleys served as an informal meeting ground. There is a sense of intimacy when one meets a fellow stranger while walking through the narrow back alley. Smiles are exchanged despite the unfamiliarity, and there is a sense of warmth that radiates from that simple act of courtesy.


Various process sketches investigating circulation, interaction between spaces, room planning etc.


Various process drawings working out the internal space and layout


Process model to explore the space, light and “street� feel through the house


legend 1

public space with garden

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public toilet

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pool of water beneath airwell

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baking workshop space public space

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laundry room private yard

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toilet

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living space top


top Through much development, the notion of blurring the lines between private and public space, while still maintaining a certain level of privacy was birthed. The public is now able to enter at many junctures on

Rooms are planned “stacked� one on top of the other to create a greater sense of scale, with the roofs of the walkways linking the rooms made of full glass, so as to allow the family to view the rain on the roof, and to see the open skies above their heads. Certain areas, such as the main garden and the airwell, are completely exposed to the environment, allowing the rain to fall through the house, helping in providing for a source of natural daylight and for ventilation.


top Concrete was used as the main material for the rooms, to allow for weathering of the recreate the feeling of the back alley; unbeknownst to passers-by, they would only realize activity going on in the rooms. view right upon ascent to the top of the stairs, whereas the staircase in the front is curved along the facade, so that one is able to use the stairs as a landing for communication, but also to appreciate the entire “street� or network of rooms in the shophouse itself.

roof plan 1:50


from left front elevation 1:50 section b-b 1:50 back elevation 1:50


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side elevation 1:50


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section a-a 1:50


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jalan pinang street view


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north bridge road street view


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back alley street view


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view from interior


Credit NUS Faculty Of Architecture for providing me with this opportunity

Mr Ho Tzu Yin

for his guidance & patience for granting us the freedom to try new ideas and pushing boundaries

Studio 11

for their support for the late nights

My Family + The Special Few for being there for me through thick & thin for putting up with my antics

all images by belle ong


eno owt

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