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PORTFOLIO OF LIYUAN GE Master of Architecture (March II) Candidate University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


High-rise habitat

01 QUARTZ HIGH-RISE HABITAT DESIGN Eral Prize Nomination Blackline Prize / Student-favorie Project Studio Design/Group work Concept, Design, Modelling, drawing, rendering, contribution: 40% Instructor: Paul Armstrong University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign / Fall 2016 Basic concept High-rise buildings are always come with a huge amount of glazing, and quartz is the basic element in it. We find that accidentally, the form of quartz is really elegant and also powerful. Then what if we extract these features from quartz and apply that to our high-rise building, probably we could create a really dynamic and powerful one. Two diagrams on the right top are combinations of the real picture of quartz and some structure lines we find, and two sketches on the right bottom, are designed according to those features we find.



High-rise habitat

Site plan & analysis & form generation Our site is located in Chicago, Streeterville, Southwest corner of the cross of Columbus drive and water street. The traffic situation here is really complicated, and this region itself could be described as the heart of Streeterville. So many import buildings are around our site, and lots of visitors would pass by our site every day. So the site analysis can be really significant at the beginning of our design. Site Spot



High-rise habitat





Green Space

Vision Corridor

Vision Linkage

Parking Ramp

River Front

Traffic Organization

Views & Facade

River Front Landscape

Views & Facade 5

High-rise habitat

Lobby & vision connection The lobby is important to high-rise buildings. We imagine that when people step into the lobby, they can not only find out activities happening in this area but also have an information about the functionality of the second floor. To actualize that, we designed the lobby as a double-floor-height atrium. In addition, to emphasized the notion of vision connection, we also put the curtain wall in the south boundary of the lobby, through this curtain wall, people can enjoy the best sunlight and the view of Chicago river.

City front plaza

Vision 1 Retial Space Hotel Lobby

Outdoor Mezzanine

1st Floor plan 6

High-rise habitat


F53- F75

Mechanical Floor

Mechanical Floor

F39- F52

Mechanical Floor

F10- F38

Mechanical Floor

South to North

F1- F9

West to East


High-rise habitat

Typical Floor Plan & Air Water System This Building is separated into two major slots, one on the west side, most rent units and regular residential units. Most of our residential units are one elevators, which had already shown on the last page.

Then because most of the units are residential, so the air supply system can efficiency and not expensive. Another famous building using this system is tru

F20 Vision 3




High-rise habitat

of it is used for the hotel; the other one on the east side consists of two different kinds of residential units, including long term bedroom or two bedroom units, only a few of them on the top are three bedroom units. And these units are service by different

n be really different from that in office buildings. One possible solution is the air-water system, which is easy to use, relatively high ump tower.

Section for residential floors

OAS Return ACU


High-rise habitat

Facade System & Sturcture System This building is basically covered by glazing system. However, to meet different requirements of atriums and private units, we designed two different type of glazing system. For atriums, which are more public, fixed curtain wall are applied; for private units, operable windows are used to offer more possibilities for residence. In the structural aspect, concrete core and mega column - outriggers system are used, this cost-effective combination has been broadly applied and also been proved by so many high-rise buildings all around the world.

Slanted Facade

Glass Panel

Air Supply Air Return

Mega column Stainless Steel Frame

10 High-rise habitat

Rigid Insulation

Vision 2

Vision 3

Vision 4

11 High-rise habitat



UIUC Studio / Individual project What If Architecture Could React? Instructor: Erik Hemingway Fall 2015

To react is to response to the surrounding environment. To react is to fulfill the task of different stages. To react is to satisfy people’s demands, no matter physical or psychological. Great explosions that killed over one hundred people (most of them were firefighters) and injured hundreds of others occurred at a container storage station at the Port of Tianjin, China on Wednesday, 12 August 2015. A pond created by this explosion also been polluted by chemical remnant NACN. Purification - Since the pond at the center of the explosion had already been polluted, the first thing to do is to purify it. To fulfill this task, I designed configurations have several stacks in it which have purification function, and sink it into the pond then purify water together. I also designed a sophisticated system that will stir the water in this pond and improve the efficiency of assimilation. Memorial – many fire fighters and civilians were died in this disaster, to mourn them and also give their families encouragement and hope, I designed a changeable light environment which can construct an atmosphere that both pure and holy, let people here to feel quiet and peace, let families of the departed to recall their sons, their dads, or their lovers. Finally, I arrange four towers consist of reaction stacks in the proper positions of the pond, then connecting them with a stone-made bridge, which allows people to get access to these four towers and at the same time, to form a real memorial Park. 13 PURI-MEMORIALS

Events & Timeline

A series of explosions that killed over one hundred people and injured hundreds of others, occurred at a container storage station at the Port of Tianjin China on Wednesday,12 August 2015. The first two explosions occurred within 30 seconds of each other at the facility, which is located in the Binhai New Area of Tianjin, China. Fires caused by the initial explosions continued to burn uncontrolled throughout the weekend, repeatedly causing secondary explosions, with eight additional explosions occurring on Saturday, 15 August 2015. The dead include 94 firefighters, 11 policemen and 53 civilians. The missing include 10 firefighters and 05 civilians.

PHASE 1 Before the explosion here was a warehouse PHASE 2 Great explosion happened


PHASE 3 Sink purification & Memorial towers into the pond PHASE 4 Become a memorial park after purification process

Two blasts ripped through a warehouse in Tianjin Port where large amounts of toxic chemicals were stored, including around 700 tons of sodium cyanide, at around 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 12.Some of these NACN scattered on the ground which can be directly moved around, but some other NACN (700T) had already dissolved into the water of the explosion-made pond. 14 PURI-MEMORIALS

TIANJIN 39°N 117°E


Memorial & Purification Task

Fire fighters and civilians were died in this disaster, to mourn them and also give their families encouragement and hope, I designed a changeable light environment emblems throbbing of souls, let families of the departed to recall their sons, their dads, or their loversin. Narrow translucent bans are attached to steel sticks, and by a series of complex mechanism, these bans will continuously open and close. By using the combination of the motion and shaking light, I try to construct an atmosphere that both pure and holy, let people here to feel quiet and peace.

Since the pond had already been polluted, the first thing to do is to purify it and bring it back to normal status. To fulfill this task, I designed a configuration has several stacks in it, on each of these stacks, there are several resin bars made of 201*7 resin (the name of resin) and a cylinder steel filter net. These bars can absorb NACN and give out no negative reactions. Hundreds of resin bars will be sink into the pond and purifying water together. Simultaneously, I also designed a sophisticated system that will stir the water in this pond and improve the efficiency of assimilation.


Consecutive Spin & Axonometric

STEP 1: Six sticks with the same length are connected to the central shaft. Because the shaft has a fold-line shape(as shown in diagrams), with the rotation of it, pairs forces with opposite nature will be generate. So, when the shaft causes an effect of push in one side,it will also cause an effect of pull in the opposite derection. STEP 2: With sticks moving back and forth, narrow bands will open and close, working as umberellas. STEP 3: The combination of bands with open and close status in the opposite direction will drag water into the system or push water out of the system, thus stirring the whole pond. Then to conduct the purification process. 17 PURI-MEMORIALS

To react is to response to the surrounding environment. To react is to fulfill the task of different stages. To react is to satisfy people’s demands, no matter physical or psychological.

WIND PRESSURE help the system to spin





Electricity help the system to spin



Formation of the Park

㄀   䴀

㜀㔀 䴀 㔀  䴀

Building Types and Distances

Routes and Main Entrance

Range of Vision and Facades

Buildiins in black stand for residence area, buildings in white are wharehouse and those in hatches are public buildings. The distances from the site to residence and public buildings area are really close, so people living and working here can get an easy access to the park.

The road in the middle of the diagram is a viaduct, and the nearest exit of this highway is in the north of the site. So the routes that can get access to the site are meet at the south side,which should be the main entrance of the whole park.

According to the maily residence and public areas are in the west side of the pond, and because the main entrance of the park is likely to be set at the southern side of the site, so the southern and west elevation of the park should present enough solemnity and attraction.


Finally, I arrange four towers consist of reaction stacks in the proper positions of the pond, then connecting them with a stone-made bridge, which allows people to get access to these four towers and at the same time, to form a real memorial Park.


03 TIMBER IN THE CITY MIXED-USED RESIDENCE HALL IN NYC Studio Design/ Group Work (Concept, design, modelling, drawing, rendering, contribution: 85%) Instructor: Taylor Mark University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Spring 2016 22 Timber in the city

Contradiction & Hysteresis

In the past decades, a huge amount of news about the explosion of population and the lack of land has been reported. It is common sense that living conditions and working opportunities in large cities are better than other places, so more people are moving into these cities and leading to a situation of population aggregation. However, supply always comes later than demand, the developing speed of cities are slower than that of increasing population. When it faces a sudden explosion of population, this hysteresis will become a serious social problem. Considerations about solving this social problem had started a long time ago. The Radiant City (Le Corbusier,1924) and Charter of Athens (1933, Athens) were concentrated on designing a more efficient and organized urban area. Relied on lots of high-rise buildings, more open public spaces were created, thus the living environment could be gradually improved. And since then, the most important role in these plans, high-rise building, has become a popular solution which has been using for so many years. However today, after a long term design practice, the solution transformed into problem.

Disappeared Community Because of the concern of efficiency and structural limitation, in high-rise residential buildings, various functions are layered together vertically, correspondently, people living in the same building don’t know their neighbors because they can hardly see each other, and they don’t usually go to amenity spaces (even within their buildings) because they can’t see them either. Thus, the community is disappearing. We can’t abandon vertical organizations because of structural limitation and efficiency consideration. But if open public places can be appropriately mixed with private living or working spaces, then individuals in these area will have direct visual and acoustical contact with these public spaces so as to their neighbors. Then maybe, they will go out of their home and enter these public space having some relax or meeting with new friends. Within this process, also, the community will be reunion.

In Between Traditional residential buildings in lower east side was really inspirable. Thanks to high density, even if people can't talk to their friends downstairs when they are at home, they can still talk to their firends in another building just next to their windows. Then what if we also insert other functions within this middle space and make them paralled to our building facades? 23 Timber in the city

Delancey Street, New York City

24 Timber in the city

At the beginning, arrange basic functions into the site, including 300+ residentail units, a gallery, and a Market. Gallery in the North because of lighting requirements, market in the middle, because it's the best location which can attract visitors both from Lowline and surrounding blocks. Units on the top from the point of privacy and good lighting conditions.

Separate each of the residential hall into 2 lower segments, in order to create a better connection for people, both in visual and physical distance aspects. Simultaneously, people can also have a direct connection with market and gallery, more important, with their neighbors.

To make layers setback verticallly, trying to cover function underneath residential units, by doing this, three different functions can gradually grow into one integral building.

Raise the North portion of residential units, to generate a portal in the North direction, for all three funtions. At the time, more space can be created for galleries.

In grasshopper, I build a surface which is gradually going down in south direction, and also going down a little bit in east direction for for the right part, going down in the west for the left part. This surface was build based on the analysis above, and in order to influence the combination method of different units, eventually to generate a scientific and dynamic shape for residential buildings.

Each unit has at least two surface exposed to both interior and exterior. Thus, people living in this building can enjoy great sunlight and have a sight of the market at the same time. They can go out of their units to the terrace, then talking to neighbors, or looking into the market from their units.

25 Timber in the city


Major perspective from Delancey Street 27 Timber in the city


Vision 1


Lowline & Gallery entrance for lower level Entrance for Units


Vision 2


The South West Corner


Entrance for Units

Vision 3 28 Timber in the city

Inside the market

Floor Plan and perspectives

Vision 1

Main Entrance for Market LL Entrance from Lowline


dential Lobby

Residential Lobby

Flexible Stall * 4

Entrance for Units

Restroom M/W

Escalator to LL1

Restroom M/W




Flexible Stall * 4

4800mm Entrance for Market

Vision 3

Main Entrance for Market


3000mm Entrance for Market

Entrance for Units

Ground floor Plan 29 Timber in the city

CLT structure In this project, to realize the long span, CLT (cross laminated timber) is used. This new material has a great nature of gravity bearing, and it can also minimize the quantity of columns. By doing that, one benefit is the space underneath each units can be used by occupants, because there won't be too many columns; simultaneously, no coloms means no vision barrier between units' windows and the market interior, so people within these units can enjoy a better view of activities happen in the market.

Section1 30 Timber in the city

Cable truss & Curtain wall For the curtain wall structure, in order to hold these glazing panels effiently and aesthetically, steal cables are applied. These cables go through window frames, and hold them together to resist lateral loads, such as winds load. This system has been well used in other projects, for example the curtain wall in the lobby of Blue Cross building in Chicago.

31 Timber in the city

Units arrangement strategy In order to meet various living requirements, nine different unit types are designed. (7 of 9 are shown on the right) Based on a basic module of 10' by 10', We made different combinations from micro unit to three bedroom, and also, we try to give each unit at least two facades exposed to either interior or exterior, so that residence in these units can enjoy sunlight and interesting stories within the gallery and market at the same time.

32 Timber in the city

Section2 33 Timber in the city

04 NEW ORIGIN NEW START TEACHING COMPLEX DESIGN STUDIO/ DISTINCTION Studio Design/Individual work Instructor: Sunhe Northeastern University of China Spring 2014 This studio's task was to design a campus complex in our university .Several functional places should be contained in this new architecture,as well as other special spaces that can improve the vitality of campus life.To meet all the demands above and to make the project better,I try to "find out" these buildings not just to design it from no where.I not only got down to read and analysed the whole university and people's needs, but also used architectural elements that can be easily found in our university  to help this brand new complex to fit well into old building groups.We can take this design as an origin,various students' activities derive from this point.And also,for the university's history,this design can be seen as a new start.

34 Teaching Complex

35 Teaching Complex

36 Teaching Complex

37 Teaching Complex

38 Teaching Complex

39 Teaching Complex

40 Teaching Complex

41 Teaching Complex

42 Teaching Complex

43 Teaching Complex

Generation 01 Bio-Diversity : 0.980

Generation 05 Bio-Diversity : 0.678

Generation 09 Bio-Diversity : 0.500

Generation 15 Bio-Diversity : 0.193

Generation 21 Bio-Diversity : 0.063

Generation 27 Bio-Diversity : 0.024

Generation 33 Bio-Diversity : 0.033

Generation 39 Bio-Diversity : 0.046

Generation 45 Bio-Diversity : 0.020

Fitness = 32.2

Fitness = 22.1

Fitness = 17.5

Fitness = 15.3

Fitness = 10.6

Fitness = 6.2

Fitness = 33.0

Fitness = 32.3

Fitness = 25.5

Fitness = 20.4

Fitness = 18.3

Fitness = 11.3

Fitness = 35.0

Fitness = 33.0

Fitness = 30.6

Fitness = 27.0

Fitness = 24.0

Fitness = 14.7

Fitness = 35.0

Fitness = 32.0

Fitness = 28.9

Fitness = 22.4

Fitness = 19.4

Fitness = 14.4

Fitness = 35.0

Fitness = 30.0

Fitness = 27.0

Fitness = 24.0

Fitness = 20.4

Fitness = 14.9

Fitness = 36.0

Fitness = 33.0

Fitness = 31.0

Fitness = 28.0

Fitness = 23.8

Fitness = 21.0

Fitness = 39.0

Fitness = 36.0

Fitness = 33.0

Fitness = 29.0

Fitness = 24.6

Fitness = 23.1

Fitness = 41.0

Fitness = 36.0

Fitness = 32.0

Fitness = 29.0

Fitness = 25.9

Fitness = 23.8

Fitness = 41.0

Fitness = 35.0

Fitness = 30.6

Fitness = 24.5

Fitness = 20.1

Fitness = 16.2

Fitness = 41.0

Fitness = 35.0

Fitness = 31.4

Fitness = 28.1

Fitness = 23.1

Fitness = 20.7

05 UNIT'S LAYOUT GENERATION & OPTIMIZATION Research Project / Contribution: geometric formation Paper will be submitted to PLEA 2017 Edinburgh Leader: Professor Yi, Kyu yun University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Fall 2016 - Spring 2017

A program that can automatically generate unit's layout Residential unit's layout always took architects a long time to design and optimize, however, unfortunately, sometimes, these layout can't meet the lighting or ventilation requirements, or worse, both of them. Then architects have to take some more time working on revising that. This is a dilemma that all of us designers have to meet all the time. Then what if we can invent some program that will automatically generate room formation according to daylight and ventilation situations? Assuming that rooms can be described by different circle regions with various radii, then to study meeting occasion of these circles can be helpful for architects to draw a unit's layout sketch with the same space relationship. And sometimes, probably, we could design rooms to be circular, and if we do that, these circles combination can be used as units layout directly. Then the problem is that is there any function already available for us to describe random occassions? There do exists a function called voronoi. The famous facade of Beijing National Aquatics Center is designed by this function. However, there is an obvious flaw for this function, that some of intersection angles are acute angles, which is not suitable for residential budilngs to use. So, although this is a great solution, we still can't use that. Let's go back to nature and find some inspiration. In nature, when foam bubbles meets together, in order to find a balance of surface tension and inner air pressure, these bubles will move to a particular position which can meet this balance. And the interesting thing is, the intersection angles of these bubles will always be 120 degree, and each intersection point can only have three or less bubbles. This is a famous physical as well as math problem, it's call ed Plateau's laws. And by using this great law, we believe that we can come up with a small program, which can properly describle random occassions of circle region combination, then, we could use that as reference of unit's layout, or, directely, itself, to be a layout.


Plateau's Law + Ladybug Analysis 45 Unit Layout Generation & Optimization

Geometric and mathatical calculation of plateau's law All of these diagrams are generated based on Plateau's law & Sine rule & Cosine rule

46 Unit Layout Generation & Optimization

Spatial relationship & Iteration diagram After having basic functions to describe basic occasions, more different combinations should be analyse, by doing that, we tried to find an iteration within all these ocassions, which means a group of combination that keeps happening.

A.A1.A1.A1.A1 A.A1.A1.A1 A.A1.A1.A2 A.A1.A1


A.A1.A1.A1.A2 A.A1.A1.A1.A3 A.A1.A1.A1.B


A.A1.A1.A1.B.A1 A.A1.A1.A1.B.A2 A.A1.A1.A1.B.A3 A.A1.A1.A1.B.B


Group3 keeps happening

A.A1.A2.A2 A.A1

no intersection


A.A1.A2.A3 A.A1.A2.B A.A1.A3.A1 A.A1.A3.A2


A.A1.A3.A3 A.A1.A3.B A.A1.B.A1 A.A1.B.A2

A A.A1.B




A.A2.A1.A1 A.A2.A1.A2

r1 > r2

A.A2.A1.A3 A.A2.A1

A.A2.A1.B A.A2.A2.A1 A.A2.A2.A2



A.A2.A2.A3 A.A2.A2.B


A.A2.B.A1 A.A2.B.A2 A.A2.B.A3



Part of Group2 A.B

Next step go back to Group 1 or Group 2

r1 < r2 Next step go back to Group 1 or Group 2 B.A



Next step go back to Group 1 B.B

r1 = r2







47 Unit Layout Generation & Optimization



Update design of traditional bookstore in E-commerce era



Online book store

... Book store Calm down


Long history Culture Lack of space


48 Update Design of Old Bookstore


Recall ...

Outer Layer Concrete+Blocks

Inner Layer GlassCurtain Wall System

Inner Layer Glass Curtain Wall System

Outdoor Space Office Yard

Outdoor Space

Ramp Cultural Activities Lifestyle Reading Urban Living Room Lifestyle Reading

49 Update Design of Old Bookstore


50 Other Works

51 Other Works

Liyuan Ge  
Liyuan Ge  

Portfolio 2017