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EDUCATION SUMMARY 2011 - Present : Bachelor of Architecture, National University of Singapore 2007 - 2008 : GCE ‘A’ Levels, Anderson Junior College 2003 - 2006 : GCE ‘O’ Levels, St Joseph’s Institution SKILLS Languages : English, Tamil(basic), German(basic)


Email :

I’m always looking for new challenges for myself to further my knowledge in design and am willing to learn new, radical methods of approaching design. I work well both in teams and individually, and try to give my best at what I’m doing.

Proficiency in model making Software : Trimble SketchUp, Vray, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, AutoCAD, Ecotect Analysis, Microsoft Office (PowerPoint, Words, Excel) WORK EXPERIENCE Visitor Service Associate, ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands Architectural Intern, Architects Team 3 (Jun-Jul 2013) Architectural Intern, AEDAS (Dec 2013 - Jan 2013)

HANDS ON EXPERIENCE & INDEPENDENT UNDERTAKINGS 2008 Created a concrete and wire mesh sculpture for my CCA, AJC 2012 Created a plywood structure to be placed at East Coast Park as part of a group project for design, NUS 2013 Created a concrete fenestration wall as part of a group project, NUS Participated in The Drawing Prize competition, organised by NUS Dept. of Architecture. Tied for 1st prize in Hand Drawn Category Participated in Bus Shelter & Covered Walkway Design Competition, organised by JTC. Shortlisted Entry Participated in Mt Faber Ideas Design Competition, organised by Mount Faber Leisure Group. Top 10 Entry. Member of the CityEx 2014 Design Team (annual NUS Architecture Exhibition) INTERESTS Sketching, model making, exploring new places, cycling


field research station. 1-6

hawker centre.

backpackers inn. personal retreat.

7 - 12

13 - 19

20 - 25


concrete. 26 - 28

plywood. 29 - 31

paper. 32

field research station.

Site : Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve The aim of this project was to develop a field research station within Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, for researchers to study the mangroves within the reserve. Located at the perimeter of SBWR, the research station sits right beside viewing Platform 1. Due to its proximity, the building should cater to the public who come to Platform 1 to enjoy the scenic views offered in the area. The context of the site and its surroundings is also used to decide the buildings form, The building also has to serve as a suitable location for researchers to carry out their research. Accomodations for researchers are also located within the building.

Above: North East Elevation, Below: Panoramic view of site


First Storey Plan

Second Storey Plan

Third Storey Plan

In mangrove restoration projects, bakau poles are stuck into the seafloor to slow the currents. This allows mangrove seedlings to settle and take root. As the site had once been used for a mangrove restoration project, I decided that the current project should also benefit the area around it by helping to propagate mangroves. Hence, a nursery was formed, and the rest of 2

the building was stacked around this core. The columns of the building then acted the same way as the bakau poles, heloing to break the tides and creating calmer waters within. Being located around the perimeter of the nursery, the required spaces were all also guaranteed panoramic views of the surroundings. The construction made use of mainly steel and timber.

Fourth Storey Plan

South East Elevation

In order to respond to the climatic conditions at the site, the NE and NW facades were heavily louvered. The monotonous facade is also broken up by the use of balconies which allow the residents to enjoy stepping out into the sun when they wanted

For the accomodations, the louvered walls could in fact be opened up completely so that the room became one with the balcony, and effectively dissolving the enclosure of a room. This can be seen in the 2 images below. When a visitor enters the building,

North West Elevation

he/she is greeted by views of the nursery . The surrounding balconies within the internal “courtyard� also offers the visitor a view into what goes on within the rest of the building, though direct access to these places are restricted.


North Western facade treatment

On the North Eastern facade, horizontal louvers are used to block the morning sun. The deep louvers also help keep put the rain, and also allows wind, that blows in from the North, to pass right though the building, providing cross ventilation for the building. In the ‘work’ areas of the building, such as the lab, workshop and seminar rooms, a combination of monsoon windows and vertical fins are

used to block sunlight yet provide cross ventilation even during rainy periods. On the North Western facade, howeverm a series of vertical louvers are used. These louvers are angled so as to block the evening sun. The angle allows the louvers to also act as a form of wind scoop, channeling the Northern wind into the rooms. The angle of the louvers also means that a person can enjoy views of Johor Straits.

North Eastern facade treatment (work)

North Eastern facade treatment (accomodation) 4

Cool wind, due to evaporative cooling, flows through the NE facade into the courtyard space

As seen on the diagram on the left, the public and private circulation run in opposite directions. The stairs leading up to the more private 2nd storey runs parallel to the direction of the private circulation to discourage the public from going up. A stairs also links the 3rd storey directly to the Resource Centre so that researchers can access this room quickly without needing to go through the Lab. The roof of the building is covered with solar panels which provide energy for the buildings daily uses. Plumbing and sewerage are linked to main pipes on land. The sectional perspective on the far right shows the different facade treatment that has been implemente for each space/ function. Accomodations have louvered facades, gathering areas have balconies, and work spaces have a combination of vertical fins and monsoon windows.


The Drawing Prize 2014 Entry - The sectional perspective aims to show how the building fares during different times of the day. 6

hawker centre.

Site : Yishun The aim of this project was to create a hawker centre and wet market, and together with that include a social enterprise. The social enterprise I chose was an urban farming scheme where residents coulf participate in urban farming activities in the centre to gain discounts when buying meals at the food centre. Being located at a corner site, it was crucial that the building responded to the many elements present in the context of the site, and at the same time be designed well enough to accomodate the social enterprise and the land required for an urban farming scheme. Key features in this site includes Yishun Park and Yishun ‘Pedestrian’ Mall.

Site/ First Storey Plan


The potential of this site becoming a shortcut for residents moving around was an important consideration for the development of the design. Even though currently underused, the field would serve as a shortcut to Yishun Mall once a sheltered structure was developed on it.

Located between 2 blocks is a fitness corner serving the residents. From this fitness corner, a visual axis connects it directly to the fitness corner at Yishun Park. This axis would be landscaped to allow the park to filter into the site.

Second Storey Plan 8

Finally, it is vital that people are drawn to the activities of the development, and thus visibility was important to draw crowds. By locating the building closer to the edge of the site, its visibility from Yishun Mall, a high pedestrian density area, would be improved, thus allowing one to know of the more options across the street..

Third Storey Plan

The wet market intersects with the food centre at a mezzanine level, allowing one to view all 3 floors from the atrium, as shown above. The landscape axis also passes through the main food centre and a porous roof fills this intersection with light, as seen on the left. Stairs are extruded onto the outside of the building to direct people up to the second storey of the food centre and the roof farming plots.

North Elevation 9

Longitudinal Section



The building also responds to the contours of the site by starting off lower than its end, as seen from the longitudinal section. This gradient also allows for the wet market to intersect the main building as a mezzanine, and therefore together with the farming plots, adding to the visual connectivity of the different activities on site.

Hawker stalls are arranged in a linear manner so that all seats can enjoy views of Yishun Park. This allows the creation of a service corridor at the back of the stalls that allows for fast delivery of raw food, as the corridor links straight to the loading/ unloading bay. The large roof overhang and the N-S orientation of the facades allow for maximum natural ventilation.

As seen from the axonometric, we can see how people will travel through the building. The blue shows people walking straight through to and from Yishun Mall. The yellow and green show how people will be directed onto the second and third floors. The section below shows how the service core links the buildings together.



backpackers inn.

Site: Geylang This project required us to create a backpackers inn in Geylang, Singapore’s red light district. The qualities of the site and the nature of the project enabled us to work to bring the unique qualities of the site into the project, yet at the same time maintaining a comfortable and safe environment for the backpackers. This required thorough understanding of the site, through various visual, emotional, and atmospheric studies. Objects that were commonly found within the vicinity of the project site was used as a starting point for the design of the backpackers inn, with other qualities of the site subsequently being added into the project.

Site & Roof Plan

SITE / R 13

One section of this project required us to create an atmospheric video of the site. The full video can be viewed here: http://www. From here, 4 qualities were to be extracted and developed further. Along with this, objects commonly found in the site were studied and geometries were extracted to form spaces. Some of the most commonly found items there included censers, red incense cans used by buddhists during prayers, and dim sum baskets that were found in the many food shops in the area as well. The extracted geometries were multiplied into a field that was then combined into a polymorphic field. In this case, agamography, a type of polymorphic art form created by Israeli artist Yaacov Agam, was used to interlace the different fields. In doing so, as a person walks pass the artwork, the image appears to be constantly changing with every step he takes. The field created (as seen from the next page) would then be used to create interesting places in which backpackers could live and interact with their surroundings. 14

Extraction of atmospheric qualities of the site into geometry and models

Extraction of geometries, from incense cans, censers, and dim sum baskets into a field

Once the field was successfully created, process models of these fields were made to visualise it in a three dimensional manner. From there, spatial qualities were added to the different forms created to fulfil the requirement of the project. Some spaces were experienced by our own stay at a backpackers inn. This was done in order for us to better understand the requirements and at the same time interact with backpackers to know their needs and

wants. Such a method of working allowed me to create unique and interesting spaces that a user could experience, instead of using standard dimensions for spaces. With this, the final structure was designed.

An agamographic field created using the geometric fields

Space exploration process 15

TOILET DETAIL AXONOMETRIC Toilet Axonometric Detail 1 : 20


Floor Plan

On the ground floor, there are shops selling daily neccesities so that the public can use this space as well. Void decks are elevated off the ground into the middle of the structure so that backpackers can interact with one another in a semi-private area, since the void deck is now not fully

1 : 50


Sleeping Quarters Axonometric Detail1 : 20

accessible to the public. Spatial qualities of certain areas within the building mimic the qualities found throughout Geylang to add a sense of familiarity with the surroundings. STORE AREA DETAIL AXONOMETRIC 1 : 20STORE AREA DETAIL AXONOMETRIC

Ground Floor Shops Axonometric Detail

1 : 20




Longitudinal Section A





SECTION 1 : 50


SECTION 1 : 50 B



North Elevation


West Elevation


1 : 500

1 : 500





SITE PLAN 1 : 1000

The analysis above shows how the different fields of the polymorphic field works its way into the structure itself. Each facade of the building appears different in terms of appearance and material use. Each facade also hides a different function within the building, be in sleeping areas or toilets. Below that, the diagram shows how the curvature 18

of the building responds to the site itself. Buildings along Geyland Road are all placed in a staggered formation. The curve of the building therefore receives the staggering buildings on both ends, allowing for a smooth transition. The indent on the back of the building is a response to the tall building located behind it. The renders of the left show the different spatial qualities of different sections.





Sectional Perspective, Spatial Qualities Winning Submission, The Drawing Prize 2013

Structure & Circulation STRUCTURE



personal retreat.

Site: MacRitchie Reservior This was one of the first projects we undertook as architecture students. The aim of the project was to create a personal retreat in MacRitchie Reservoir, and in the process learn about space. My retreat was located at the top of Jelutong Tower, a viewing tower in the middle of MacRitchie Park at a height of 20m, giving the retreat panoramic views of the Central Catchment Area. Since it was located at the top of an existing viewing tower, I found that it would be appropriate for the retreat to carry forward the language of the tower and not deviate too much from it. Hence, a structural framework based on the tower was created. 20

Site/Roof Plan

The Jelutong tower is a 20m tall viewing tower consisting of 6 levels. A spiral stairs in the middle leads people up to each floor. The entire steel tower was made as a very functional structure and was not decorated to be aesthetic. Because of this, the retreat also uses steel for its framework, into which spaces for the retreat are

added. Since the top of the viewing tower should still be accesible to the public, the entrance of the retreat would be cantilevered at a corner, and the rest of the structure would be above the top platform. The left image shows a section of Jelutong Tower while the image below is a model of the top of the tower.


To maximise the space available within the retreat, the stairs were extruded to the outside. This was also done so that the flow of the spiral stairs of the Tower would be repeated within this additional structure, thus adding to the continuation of the viewing tower’s language. Being located above the canopy of the secondary rainforest of the Central Catchment Area, 22

the retreat would surely experience the full strength of the sun as there would be no shade. However, an advantage of being located high up would be the increased wind speeds and hence better ventilation of the space. Therefore, it was decided that the retreat would be covered with louvres, so that the sun could be kept out but wind would be allowed in. This also allows for

a play of light and shadow.

First Storey Plan

East Elevation Second Storey Plan 23

Third Storey Plan

Exploded Axonometric Detail



North Elevation 25


The aim of this installation was to create a concrete fenestration wall that could be multiplied and used in a building facade. This design elements would help allow sunlight and ventilation into the building yet shade the user and protect them from rain. This installation required us to have a deep understanding of the properties of concrete, experiencing how to mix concrete and create the formwork neccessary for the design first hand. Plywood was used by my group as the formwork material, and multiple layers of plywood was cut and glued together to create the mould. When removed, the edges of the plywood leaves its imprint of the conctrete surface, giving the design texture. 26

Plan, Sections, & Elevations of Concrete Fenestration Wall

Bending rebar for the formwork

Formwork finalised on SketchUp. The red and blue elements were to be made of plywood while the green elements were to be made of styrofoam.

Scaled mockups of the fenestration wall and the formwork were first made with plaster and styrofoam for trouble shooting and made observations and amendments of the final outcome.

Testing different lubrications

Hand mixing concrete 27

The actual formwork, dismantled.

Before assembly and pouring of concrete.




Design processes (axonometric) 28

Final design.

Removal of formwork.


This project required us to create a plywood structure that would temporarily be placed at East Coast Park for the use of the public. Due to this, safety of the structures were paramount, and we had to have a clear understanding of working with the material. Our requirement was to create a dining structure, for dining by the beach. With flexibility and modularity in mind, my group created a structure that could easily be reconfigured to the liking of the user. Slots provided would allow one to manipulate the position of floor, seat, table and roof. The entire structure was assembled without the use of glue or nails and work purely through the friction between the different components of the structure. 29

The project began as a series of exploration of spaces by all group members. Subsequently, one design was picked to be developed further and be implemented into the structure for East Coast Park. All designs had to make use of the qualities of plywood.

Plan, with panels closed 30

Plan, with panels opened

The adjustable planes within the structure allowed for many seating configurations and greater interaction among users.

The final completed structure after its assembly in East Coast Park.



This was a project of my personal interest. As a fan of the Harry Potter novels by JK Rowling, one day, soon after watching the last movie, I was playing with a piece of paper and rolling it into a roll when an idea struck me. This was the start of Hogwarts by Paper, my replica of the wizard school, using only paper. The project occupied me for weeks and many things were redone so that I could perfect it as much as I could. Everything was done by estimation, using a rough plan of the school that I had acquired from the net, and various images of the school from the movies. Only the base of the model was made of a different material, styrofoam. The most recent additions to it has been Hagrids Hut and lighting in certain areas. 32


Portfolio_Haemal Nair  
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