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Editor: Jackson Tan Co-Editor: Simon-Kyle Rocknathan Cover design: Simon-Kyle Rocknathan & Rachel Song

© 2021 by ASD@SUTD All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without permission. All images are © of the authors, reproduced with the kind permission of the authors and/or their representatives. Photo credits: as attributed in the pages. Every effort has been made to contact copyright holders and to ensure that all the information presented is correct. Some of the facts in this volume may be subject to debate or dispute. If proper copyright acknowledgment has not been made, or for clarifications and corrections, please contact the publishers and we will correct the information in future reprintings, if any. ISBN 978 981 18 0221 8 www.sutd.edu.sg www.asd.sutd.edu.sg

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CONTENTS 07 09 10

FOREWORD

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS INTRODUCTION

12

PROJECT BRIEF

14

PRECEDENT STUDIES

40

SITE STUDIES


CREATIVE PLACEMAKING IN SINGAPORE: A CRITICAL REFLECTION

84

CREATE

88

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR HOE SU FERN

BLK 113 / STOMPING GROUND / PROJECT VEST

SPACES FOR THE ACTIVE YOUTHS

146

CONSERVE

148

IMAGINING YOUTH-TOPIA

172

CHILL

174

BIOGRAPHIES

210

AUSTEN CHAN

S. A. S. H / PLASTI-CITY

ADIB JALAL

SOMERSET LIVING ROOM / CANOPY VILLAGE


6 FOREWORD

FOREWORD


The Somerset Belt is set to become a vibrant space for youths to connect with one another, create new experiences and celebrate their dreams and aspirations. We envision it to be a space that is created for youth, by youth.

Youth-Topia celebrates the coming together of the age -old practice of architecture and the evergreen notion of youth, and how one form – the old and the new, can give rise to another in a more synergistic manner.

Youth-Topia presents opportunities for SUTD students to help realise our ambitions for Somerset Belt. Through this platform, SUTD students ideated and created new concepts, and subsequently brought their studio plans to life. With ideas ranging from an artists’ village, AR graffiti, a living room in the middle of the city and shelters made of repurposed plastic, each proposal in this collection demonstrates creativity and innovation in expressing what playing and working in this space could look like.

The students of the Architecture and Sustainable Design (ASD) Pillar of SUTD, youths who are empowered by a distinct architectural education and digital competencies, are given the opportunity of re -imagining a public space in the city and how architecture can be a vehicle to provide space to spark conversations, thoughts and dreams that can help to shape the future of Singapore.

I applaud the professors and students behind Youth-Topia who have shown great creativity and boldness in reimagining Somerset Belt. Their perceptive observations of the interactions between communities and urban spaces, coupled with personal experiences, have generated plans and designs that not only respond to the urban landscape in the area, but also create unique experiences for visitors. Our partnership with the Architecture and Sustainable Design Pillar of SUTD embodies the importance of engaging youths and providing them platforms to work together for positive societal change. It is our hope that the Somerset Belt will evolve into a place that youths can call their own, as they imagine the possibilities that a civic space can offer, and their contributions in bringing it to life. Mr. Philip Ong Deputy Secretary (Community, Youth, Sports) Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth

With the great support and collaboration of Ministry of Culture, Community, and Youth, a place is created for the meeting of people, young and old, to discover what is around us now, and to imagine what can be the possibilities of the future. The Youth-topia project is a testament to a statement of Japanese architect and Pritzker Prize laureate - Tadao Ando, “Architecture is fundamentally a public space where people can gather and communicate, think about the history, think about the lives of human beings, or the world.” Professor Erwin Viray Head of Pillar Architecture and Sustainable Design, SUTD


8 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


Thank you to Mr. Kent Teo- CEO of Invade, Mr. Larry Yeung, CEO of Participate in Design, Mr. Jason Chen – Director of Place Management at Urban Redevelopment Authority, Mr. Austen Chen – Director of WASAA Architects & Associates and Mr. Simon Bogalo – Lead designer of CONVIC for their time and effort in conducting a series of seminars for the students; sharing critical insights and considerations during the process of placemaking. I would like to extend my appreciation to Mr. Adib Jalal, Co-Founder and Director of Shophouse & Co who continuously support the studio in many aspects and is always generous with his time to share his experience and knowledge of placemaking, youth and design. Special thanks to our studio’s specialist reviewers - Ms. Lim You ling, Director of Urban Design (Central Area, North) URA and her team, Mr. Edward Yee, Co-founder Givfunds, Mr. Lee Wai Fong, Director DP Architects, Assistant Professor Hoe Su Fern, Arts and Culture Management Programme Coordinator, SUSS & SMU and Mr. Tay Choon Hong, Senior Director (Youth

I would also like to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to Associate Professor & Associate Head of Pillar(ASD) Yeo Kang Shua, Mr. Vincent Soh and the entire administration team of SUTD and ASD Pillar for the support of Studio Youth-Topia and facilitating collaboration with Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth. In addition, thank you to all the students who had spent considerable time and effort; helping with the wide range of aspects that needed to be taken care in order to assemble this wonderful publication. Sincere appreciation to Lester Lim, Jacob Chen, Simon-Kyle Rocknathan and Rachel Song for their meticulous work and patience with my infinite requests. Finally, I would like to extend my sincere thanks to the entire team of Youth Division, Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, as it is through their enthusiastic collaborative spirits that enable Studio Youth-Topia’s work to be disseminated widely. Jackson Tan Editor of Youth-Topia

CREATE - BLK 113

I am indebted to Assistant Professor Alex Sun who agreed without hesitation to co-lead the studio and opening up a new discourse in the integration of basic financial discipline within architectural education.

Division) and his team for reviewing the students proposal and contributing critical viewpoints and suggestions to improve their proposals.

9

There are many people to thank for the success of Studio Youth-Topia. I am grateful to Professor Erwin Viray, Head of Pillar SUTD/ASD for his guidance and support of the studio. Associate Professor Bige and Assistant Professor Immanuel Koh for kindly sharing the potentials and possibilities of using data to inform placemaking design decisions.


INTRODUCTION 10 INTRODUCTION

JACKSON TAN / ALEX SUN

TERM 8 Benjamin Chong Goh Ee Yan Eion Ho Di Xiang Darren Kyaw Htet Paing Chris Lim Hai Heng Lester Simon-Kyle Rocknathan Song Li Ying Rachel Tay Boon Kiat Wang Qiaorou Sim I-En Grace TERM 9 Lun Ci Min Peng Maoyu Sandra Chan Su Cheng Toh Sing Ru

Architecture education in a pandemic world The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about paradigm shifts in almost all aspects of our daily life. Architecture education within a physical studio-based setting is suddenly forced to reconsider its approach. The pressure to change was swift and the need for immediate response was unprecedented. SUTD like many other institutions is faced with the same issues. However, being a small and young institution with technology and design as the core DNA puts SUTD in an advantageous position. Many of the infrastructure to facilitate a digital learning

environment was already in place and the small campus size allows for quick implementation of plans. While the ‘hardware’ side of things were manageable, the main challenge is with the ‘software’ pedagogy. Lateral thinking is constantly required and adaptation to new ideas must be receptive among the community. In Sustainable Option Studio 2, SUTD/ASD was able to convene, discuss and implement mitigating strategies promptly to minimize the effect of conducting full digital studio. Studio Youth-Topia, along with 7other design studios, created a blog forum where students could update their work and receive comments from both peers and instructors. Twice a week, studio sessions via video conferencing were organized and students were encouraged to turn on their cameras so as to attain face to face contact time. Time saved from fabricating physical models was diverted to stronger emphasis on better representation techniques. Advancement and proliferations of online platforms allowed our weekly sessions to be on a digital space where everyone is able to display and present their work while instructors and peers commented via live sketches on the same drawing. However, the success in some aspects of the digital studio is far from suggesting that physical studio environment is no longer relevant. What this short experiment highlights, is the potentials of a hybrid learning environment to further enhance architectural education. Through the 3 months of Studio Youth-Topia’s experience, we hope it was a great opportunity for students to experience firsthand studio’s pedagogy as well as the importance of resourcefulness and resilience. Constant seeking of opportunities within a challenging


Introduction to Financial Disciplines The Fragmented Authorship For the past 20 years, the capitalistic development pattern, consolidation and domination of the large architecture firms have led to many changes in the design process. The design workflow now looks a lot like factory assembly line based on complex network structures which results in a detachment between buildings and their architects. Corporate decision-making problematized by financial food chain power structure, makes it almost impossible to pinpoint the author. To make things more complicated, the digital design tools and scripting programmes turns a large portion of the authorship into programming which further pushes the architects away from the author’s seat. Facing up to these challenges, our studio “Youth-Topia” provides students an opportunity to equip themselves with necessary business and financial skill-sets to find their own paths to regain authorship. In this project, students were made to take on the role of Archipreneur to revitalize Somerset Belt area as a space that is designed by the youth, for the youth.

The Unfiltered Experience Perhaps the best way to create the “Youth-Topia” experience is to keep it as real as possible. Instead of conducting studio the conventional way, here we put the students at the driver’s seat to hit the road in an unprecedented and unfiltered way from the beginning. Our first step is to allow students to gain a perspective of architect’s role in the real estate development ecosystem. This involves an in-depth understanding of how an actual project is realized through business development, equity and debt raising, investment and development management etc. Understanding other key variables in the design decision making equation allows the students to have a more open view when it comes to creating the links and balancing between 1) investment objectives, 2) design solutions and 3) operational requirements. While taking on various roles when approaching their projects with this open world concept, the students are pushing the boundaries of our profession and redefining what is required be an architect in the new era. Archipreneur, Return Thinking & Financial Modeling The world is becoming more multi-lingual and multidisciplinary, so is the architecture profession. In this studio, financial disciplines are taught as a second language to the architects so they could truly speak the same language with their clients, investors, and collaborators to have a better understanding of one another. Knowledges in return thinking, financial statement, structuring and modelling were taught in relation to their design projects to help make the link between architectural differentiations and the subsequent financial implications. Archipreneurs are encouraged to break free from their traditional places in the ecosystem to not only design the look and feel but also the innovative business system to fund their projects, scale the operations and eventually create capital channels to monetize. In this Youth-Topia experience, students are given a unique opportunity to turns their thinking and struggling into architectural expression and business innovations.

11 INTRODUCTION

environment is a strong trademark of entrepreneurship which interestingly parallels the skill-set learned within architecture. By using placemaking as a brief and thinking about designing spaces for an often-neglected age group, Studio Youth-Topia hopes to use that as a platform to provoke our students into speculating the future possibilities of youths and their own careers as an architect. Successful creative placemaking will activate sites and communities; allowing our youths to have an unique space which they can call as their own. Our students, who shortly will be future architects themselves, should have the confidence and ability to control the type of work that is aligned with his/ her interest. Their strength in identifying opportunities and performing basic financial assumptions on top of excellent design skill-sets will attract support to their projects; marrying the best of entrepreneur with architecture to be the future archiprenuer.


PROJECT BRIEF “The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow”

12

PROJECT BRIEF

Nelson Mandela

With the reveal of plans to revitalise Somerset Belt area as a youth precinct within Orchard Road, Youth-Topia seeks to explore the boundaries and intersections of architecture and programmes to create a unique civic space for Singapore’s youth. This space should inspire and celebrate the idea of Singapore’s youth in public space, while also catalysing new interactions and possibilities in the city. Within this urban environment setting, students are invited to shape the ‘hardware’ and ‘software’ aspects of a civic space and devise ways to expand its role into a venue for art, creative expression, public programming, and education. Eventually, it will be a space designed by youth (that’s you), for the youth. Students are encouraged to challenge the notion of ‘architecture’ and design/alter new or existing permanent architecture, temporary follies, transportable urban elements that would facilitate a wide variety of functions and programmes. This inevitably requires careful consideration of functions, users and operations that will support and activate the physical domain. Given the multi-dimensional and dynamic nature of youths, and social habits that tend to revolve around evenings and weekends, students must also consider usage cycles and behavioural patterns that change dramatically between day & night, and across various times of the year. This shared space for youths, while serving a critical social function, must be sustainable - programmes need to be sustained, facilities must be maintained, and entrepreneurial ventures must be feasible. A holistic approach to the brief is greatly

encouraged with the aim to entice partnerships of private sector, authorities, young people and the community to form a dynamic four-way, inter-connecting relationship that can drive the proposal. Our brief will be centred around the 4,000sqm Youth Park in Singapore which includes The Red Box (a purpose-built centre for Youth Corps Singapore named after Mr Lee Kuan Yew’s famous red briefcase) and The Red Bus. In line with the recently revealed placemaking masterplan for Somerset Belt, the proposed site offers a unique opportunity to connect to Orchard Road, Singapore’s main shopping street, while responding to the contrasting residential context along Devonshire Road. This site is also a key node in the Somerset Belt precinct with existing infrastructure and communities that can be built upon. Students are to expand their understanding of architecture and take on the role as ‘The New Architect’ – an archiprenuer who can redefine traditional architecture discipline to identify, formulate and create new opportunities. Apart from working on design brief, students will be introduced to the world of business and financial disciplines such as business structuring, financial accounting, fund raising and financial risk management in realistic settings. These new knowledges should complement and enhance the archiprenuer in exploring his/ her architectural narratives of youth, community, culture, and public space from multi-faceted angles to arrive with a plausible proposition.


PROJECT BRIEF 13 Youth Park’s Red Bus


PRECEDENT STUDIES 16

BLUE CARPET

18

BONFIRE SQUARE

20

MERIDA YOUTH FACTORY

22

LENTSPACE

24

CITY THREAD

25

MINI LIVING URBAN CABIN

26

PRESENCE IN HORMOZ

THOMAS HEATHERWICK

MAT OFFICE

SELGASCANO

INTERBORO

SPORTS

PENDA

ZAV ARCHITECTS


A ROLLING MASTERPLAN

28

STOREFRONT FOR ART & ARCHITECTURE

30

SUPERKILEN

32

TKTS TIMES SQUARE

34

UNDEFINED PLAYGROUND

36

THE YELLOW PAVILION

37

WHERE THE RIVER RUNS

38

JÄGNEFÄLT MILTON

STEVEN HOLL

TOPOTEK 1 + BIG ARCHITECTS + SUPERFLEX

PERKINS EASTMAN + CHOI ROPHIA

B. U. S. ARCHITECTURE

ARCHITECTURE FOR HUMANS

PRECHT


PRECEDENT STUDIES 16

BLUE CARPET

THOMAS HEATHERWICK, 2002, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom

This project mimics an ill-fitting carpet, placed in a neglected corner of Newcastle. The stand-out blue paving injects character into the space with its interactions with the existing infrastructure; lapping up against walls, punctured to accommodate lampposts and bollard, and peeling to form public benches. As an urban infill, the directionality of Blue Carpet’s paving can be interpreted as being influenced by the human clusters that surround it. The various nearby services act as attractor nodes, with their own circles of influence, and within them, a field condition is generated.

An interesting exercise could be to reimagine these field lines as more fluid paths, compared to Heatherwick’s geometrical response. These field line could even affect the topography, adding an extra dimension to the urban intervention.

Top: Circles of influence and field condition created by human clusters


PRECEDENT STUDIES 17 Top: Field lines from human clusters Middle: Existing geometrical site response Left: Proposed fluid site response


Basic Shapes

Abstract to Form

18

PRECEDENT STUDIES

Abstract

BONFIRE SQUARE MAT OFFICE, 2019, Shenzhen, China

This project is situated by the beach, in a vacant barbecue lot of Xichong Resort. It exploits the site’s existing grid of round and orthogonal BBQ tables, traversing it with bright yellow frames which break the rigid layout. When observed from plan view, Bonfire Square can be seen to be divided as a grid, with the BBQ pits serving as points on the grid. By abstracting these BBQ pits as nodal points, we can get an idea of how the installation is laid out on the grid.

By further abstracting the art installation from a weave pattern into lines, we can also get an idea of how the installation itself is laid out on the grid. This gives rise to 3 basic lines shapes which go on to make up the form of the installation.

Top: Abstraction of the installation form into basic geometry, which can be reconstructed into new forms Top Right: Artists at work, in the public eye Right: A courtyard of collaboration


“V+T” Variation Nodes

Abstract

Basic Shapes

Plan

Plan w Canopy

The following variations employ the use of the “V” and “T”, as well as a combination of them to create patterns across the site. Each variation serves to create functional public spaces to a certain degree via using the weave patterns themselves to serve as dividers, creating clearer space hierarchies.

19

Form

PRECEDENT STUDIES

By employing the basic shapes using derivatives from Rangoli weave pattern formations, it would also be possible to create near endless permutations of patterns across the BBQ grid.

“V” Variation

“T” Variation

Nodes

Abstract

Form

Plan

Basic Shapes

Plan w Canopy

Nodes

Abstract

Basic Shapes

Form

Plan

Plan w Canopy


PRECEDENT STUDIES 20

Skaters Climbers Dancers Just Hangin’

MERIDA YOUTH FACTORY SELGASCANO, 2011, Mérida, Spain

Commissioned by the Government of Extremadura, as one of three Youth Factories in the region, Youth factory Mérida serves as a safe space for the local youth to practice outdoor leisure activities and foster community. The vibrant 3000m2 site hosts a skate park, a climbing wall, an internet café, indoor studios as well as sheltered gathering spaces. Situated on the outskirts of Mérida, this project serves an adjacent high school and its surrounding neighbourhoods. It lies within walking distance of a train station and Río Albarregas Park.

The structure sits low in the street like its neighbours, peeking through the surrounding greenery. Its staggered columns act as frames, offering passersby glimpses of the dynamic activities taking place on its grounds, an invitation to explore its numerous programs. While much of the space is not explicitly programmed, the project makes use of material thresholds and landscaping to cleverly segment an apparently continuous ground plane. The resulting implicit thresholds help mitigate intersections between the variety of users the Youth Factory attracts.


PRECEDENT STUDIES 21

Explicit Thresholds refer to physical barriers that segregate spaces. In the context of a skate park, this goes beyond wall and fences includes steps and ramps; things that are able to restrict the flow of movement. Implicit Thresholds create a sense of segregation visually, but do not obstruct movement. Here, various site materials are used to create implicit thresholds.

Top Left: Paths different users take at the youth park Top: Explicit Thresholds Left: Implicit Thresholds


Gathering Spaces

Isolation Spaces

Meeting Points

Sightseeing Spaces

Activity Spaces

Sightseeing Conversation Pedestrain Fences Spaces Walkway

Street Entry/Exit Point

Gathering Spaces

Isolation Spaces

Meeting Points

Sightseeing Spaces

Activity Spaces

Sightseeing Conversation Pedestrian Spaces Fences Walkway

22

PRECEDENT STUDIES

Street Entry / Exit Point

LENTSPACE INTERBORO, 2009, New York, United States

LentSpace is a small-budget temporary project to activate a privately-owned vacant site that is awaiting renewal. It comprises of a maze -like street tree nursery and a sculptural fence made of rotating sections. Apart from regulating entrance to the site, the fence also doubles as public seating, and exhibition panels. The added dimension of rotation lets the benches be reconfigured into various seating arrangements and social spaces. The nursery also has stepped seating elements, as well as strategically-placed exits that coincide with commuters’ shortcut routes.

Interesting paths develop between the eastern and western ends of the site. While the nursery is dense with movable planters, between it and the fence is an open space of similar size. This juxtaposition of dense and opens spaces welcomes many uses, and the large and small path widths create a varied walking experience.

Top: Path width analysis Right: Degrees of spaciousness


23

PRECEDENT STUDIES


PRECEDENT STUDIES

Far Left: Perceived scale of the alley Middle: Humanised scale of installation

24

Left: Segmentation of space

CITY THREAD SPORTS, 2018, Chattanooga, United States

City Thread is piece of urban infrastructure that intends to catalyse interactions between the different actors in a city. It activates a neglected alleyway in downtown Chattanooga. The lime green steel tube expertly utilises its relationship with the buildings that sandwich it, forming a vibrant social space of many uses. The back lane serves as a connector in the urban fabric, connecting to the main street and is directly accessible by the surrounded building. These have provided the site with opportunities of having transient movement. City Thread captures this passive movement and uses it

to activate the space. The winding geometry is minimal, but manages to segment the alley into spaces more befitting of the human scale. These segments serve as multi-purpose program spaces, with their own unique characteristics. Between the segments are regions where the ‘thread’ rests on the ground, and this forms seating for the different user groups. This close -up experience contrasts with the open event spaces. This installation is elegantly site -specific, engaging the existing environment, and with its geometry, helps revitalise it.


PRECEDENT STUDIES Top: Roof Periscopes

25

Right: Three zones; two private, one public

MINI LIVING URBAN CABIN SUN DA YONG, 2018, Beijing, China

The Urban Cabin by MINI LIVING x Sun Dayong from Penda is part of the House Vision Exhibition in Beijing and it is also the 4th installation of the The Global Village series by MINI Living. These cabins by MINI Living have the same starting point: 15m2 inhabitable footprint, and the design changes to reflect the city it travels to. The layout of the cabin directs individuals towards the central space of the living unit. The ceiling is decorated with golden surfaced periscopes which provides multiple views of the vicinity from the same spot.

The furniture within the cabin is also designed in a manner that they help to directs views towards the periscopes on the roof. The day-lit interior of the cabin can be divided into three zones; two private and one public. The private spaces are the living room/bedroom and the bathroom/kitchen while the public area is the semi open courtyard. This layout was inspired by the traditional hutongs in Beijing, as hutongs exist in between private houses and serve was where neighbours spend a fair amount of time in the day to socialize and interact with one another.


Cycling

Taking Photographs Relaxing

Waiting Performing Recycling

26

PRECEDENT STUDIES

Eating/Drinking

PRESENCE IN HORMOZ ZAV ARCHITECTS, 2017, Hormoz Island, Iran

Built on a small island in the Persian Gulf, this project was envisioned as a walkable urban space, centred around sustainability and influenced by traditional Adobe structures. Presence in Hormoz, or Rong Cultural Centre was designed in collaboration with the locals, and programmed as a community centre. It is testament to the strengths of rammed earth construction, as it was quick to build and integrates harmoniously with the island’s geomorphology.

As the island is only accessible via ferry, the activity surrounding Rong fluctuates with its schedule. Its large steps are the highlight of the centre, a versatile intervention serving a multiplicity of community events.

Top: Speculated activity intensities over the course of a day Right: Different layout for the many activities held at the community centre


Typical night Typical Night

PRECEDENT STUDIES

TypicalAfternoon afternoon Typical

27

TypicalEarly early morning Typical Morning

Music performance Among among audience Music Performance Audience

SmallScale scale concert Small Concert

Large scale Performance/Formal performance/Formal event Large Scale Event

SunsetWatching watching Sunset

FuneralCeremony ceremony Funeral

Recycling event Recycling Event


PRECEDENT STUDIES 28

A ROLLING MASTERPLAN JÄGNEFÄLT MILTON, 2010, Åndalsnes, Norway

Jägnefält Milton, a Swedish architecture firm, proposed a series of rolling buildings which makes use of new and existing railway lines which cut through the a small town of Åndalsnes. Found along the Fjords of Norway, Åndalsnes is surrounded by mountains and rivers, and attracts thousands of tourists every summer. A Rolling Masterplan puts a number of programs, including a public bath, a concert hall, and a hotel, on wheels. This system provides a unique opportunity to allow the town to reorganize programmatic layouts depending on seasons and events.

In summer, the buildings could venture out of town, bringing spaces out to rural areas which otherwise would have little access to some programs. In the winter, buildings could be pulled into the town centre, creating a temporary winter village. The hyperflexibility of the rolling buildings also gives tourists a new town to come back to every year. Top: Circular flow of space from building entrances Top Right: Spatial division from building corners Right: Visual cones along circulation paths


29

PRECEDENT STUDIES


PRECEDENT STUDIES 30

STOREFRONT FOR ART & ARCHITECTURE STEVEN HOLL, 1993, New York, United States

A non-profit gallery space in Manhattan which blurs the threshold of interior and exterior, with a facade comprising of twelve vertically and horizontally pivoting panels. Because it lies closer to the ground than its neighbours, most of which are twice its height, Storefront has a more intimate connection with passers-by. It makes full use of this, drawing them in with its dynamic facade panels. The varying degrees of openness it affords the space different levels of visual connection between pedestrians and it’s exhibits.

These panels have been the base for many innovative and exciting exhibitions over the years, many of which riff off the unique facade elements as part of the exhibition design, letting the exhibition intrude into the street.

Top: Circulation Top Right: Closed panels visual connection Right: Open panels visual connection


31

PRECEDENT STUDIES


Swings Iraqi Swings Jamaican Soundsystem

Indian Playground

Boxing

Ukranian Elephant Slide Turkish Fitness

32

PRECEDENT STUDIES

Iraqi Swings

Thai Boxing

Ramp/Seating

Skate Ramp

Basketball Court

SUPERKILEN

Ramp/Seating Ramp/Seating

Skate Ramp Skate Ramp

Sports Complex

Skate Ramp

Basketball court Basketball court

Skate Ramp Skate Ramp

Sports Complex Sports Complex

TOPOTEK 1 + BIG ARCHITECTS + SUPERFLEX, 2012, Copenhagen, Denmark

An urban space spanning 750 metres that promotes integration in the midst of ethnic diversity, designed in collaboration with local residents and associations. In a district known for its high crime rates, Superkilen was built as means for residents to take back the park and establish a new image for the neighbourhood. Divided into three zones: the Red Square for sports, the Black Market for food and the Green Park as a children’s playground. Sixty nationalities are represented in the project via eclectic street furniture and follies.

The large mix of programs and activities concentrated within the site, and its placement in a predominantly residential area makes the park a great social condenser. The adjacency of activity spaces is accentuated with complimentary street furniture which encourages mixity between programs.


PRECEDENT STUDIES 33 Top Left: Uses and activities Top: Basketball/hockey/football court with ramps along the sides for skaters and spectators Right: Seating areas that double as skatepark features


PRECEDENT STUDIES 34

TKTS TIMES SQUARE PERKINS EASTMAN + CHOI ROPHIA , 2010, Åndalsnes, Norway

TKTS Booth is a ticket booth that triggered the revitalisation of Times Square, with its roof that takes the form of a grandstand that views the urban cityscape. A marvel of glass and steel, this ticket booth was prefabricated and placed onsite to avoid the difficulties of construction in the bustling environment. The grandstand tapers in response to its site, and it is fully lit with LEDs, ending off in a canopy for the ticketing booth operating beneath it.

The booth capitalizes on the spectacle of Times Square – one of the most famous urbanscapes in the world, and at the same time, is a spectacle in itself, a microcosm of human activity. Its iconic figure creates an interplay of the roles actor and spectator, between its users and pedestrians.

Top: Activity in the heart of Times Square Right: Populating the grandstand


Inclined to Find a Seat (Tired from Walking)

Filled Grid

Inclined to Explore 35

PRECEDENT STUDIES

Empty Grid

Spectator

Actor

Non-Peak Period

Actor

Spectator

Peak Period


x

x

PRECEDENT STUDIES

x x

x

x

football

x

x

x

basketball

x

free-tennis disc

x

unusable

36

free-space

UNDEFINED PLAYGROUND B. U. S. ARCHITECTURE, 2016, Seoul, South Korea

A modular, lightweight, adaptable steel structure with multiple configurations that allows youths to manipulate public space to suit their needs. Inspired by observing children play – ‘kids know that any place can become a playground as long as there’s a ball’. B.U.S Architecture designed a mobile medium where the boundaries of the playing field are left up to the imagination of the users. This simple idea brings up versatility and freedom, elements which tend be lacking in the midst of busy city life.

Undefined Playground comprises of three triangular segments, joined together by their corners with two hinges. This allows the ‘playground’ to be folded and unfolded in plan. The permutation study above examines the myriad of possible spaces different extents of unfolding create.

Top: Permutation study


4m

2m

37

PRECEDENT STUDIES

1m

THE YELLOW PAVILION ARCHITECTURE FOR HUMANS, 2019, Pristina, Kosovo

Sited on a cluttered, chaotic street in the city, The Yellow Pavilion is an urban intervention aiming to pull commuters out of their speedy transits to stop and enjoy the space. Visually striking, the bright yellow steel frames attract pedestrians and add vibrancy to the area, engaging users with the many activities it is able to support. The intervention comprises of four structures, set in a row, and has played host to basketball games, photoshoots, exhibitions and even a public debate with the city’s mayor in attendance.

The simple infrastructure creates visual sight-lines that help to illustrate the different tiers of activity through the designers’ usage of hierarchy. Different heights of the pavilion are essential in creating visual sight-lines that help to vary users’ experiences and perceptions of the street.

Top: Sightlines and view cones


E2

PRECEDENT STUDIES

E1

E3

38

E4

WHERE THE RIVER RUNS PENDA, 2015, Wuhan, China

This installation for China’s the International Garden Expo is a meandering maze of sunken paths that puts visitors through the ebbs and flows of water in an imaginary river.

The varied topography of the meadow gives visitors a dynamic visual experience as they pass through the installation. Views between paths widen and narrow with the rise and fall of the terrain.

With the goal of drawing attention to the global water crisis, Penda designed and undulating grassy topography, intersected by winding paths that lead to a central atrium. Visitor are invited to interact with the installation by plantings seeds into various planters along the paths, an act mirroring how water in a river brings life to its surroundings.

With four different exits on its perimeter, the installation provides visitors with many options. First-time visitors keen on exploring the paths maybe go back and forth between exits, while picnic-goers may head straight for the atrium.


E3 to E3 360m

E4 to E4 400m

E1 to E4 244m

E3 to E1 40m

E3, E1 to E4 200m

E3 to E4 150m

E4 to E1 244m

E1 to E2 100m

E2 to E2 30m

E3 to E2 60m

E4 to E2 80m

PRECEDENT STUDIES

E2 to E2 390m

39

E1 to E1 400m

Top Left: All possible paths through the installation Top: Routes of the Explorer; permutations of different entrances and paths Right: Routes of the Picnic-goes; shortest routes from each entrance to atrium to exit


SITE STUDIES

40

SITE STUDIES

The site is located at Somerset Youth Park, Red box and Red bus bounded by Somerset Rd, Grange Road and Devonshire Rd. Researching to gain deep understanding of the site and its contexts is a critical step to inform the designer about the strengths and potentials of the site. Through this process, designers will be in a better position to make informed decisions on possible responses, solutions or interventions in order to enhance the quality of the site. There is no prescriptive ways to analyse a site and it take place in many forms, levels and scales. It often requires the designer to visit and revisit the site on numerous occasions at different times of the day, week or seasons in order to have a clearer understanding of the elements. A well documented and detailed site study draws on rigorous observation, careful documentation, and investigation or research. The site studies conducted by studio Youth-Topia is set as three major components: DRAWING, MODELLING, and ANALYSIS. PART A – DRAWING As a studio, students are to collectively generate measured base drawings and site system drawings and document all of their findings and information on a series of different CAD layers. The intent of this work is to create a single site drawing along with all the relevant information in separate layers that the various archiprenuers might need to evaluate a particular site. Base Drawing 1) Figure Ground Drawing: document the footprint of buildings/structures within coverage area.

2) Base Plan : line drawing showing existing buildings/ objects on and around the site, surrounding streets, sidewalks, utilities, amenities, as detailed as possible (above + below ground). 3) Site Sections: north/south and east/west sections cut to include the adjacent blocks (above + below ground). 4) Site Elevations: continuous street elevations of blocks facing 4 sides of the site and also across the sites (Total 8 elevations) Site System Drawings/Diagrams PART B – MODELLING Using content generated by Part A, our studio will collectively create a 3dimensional model of the site and its neighbourhood using the same site coverage of 350m x 350m centred on Youth Park. Model should include as much below ground details as possible in view of potential below ground connection to SCAPE for some of the schemes. PART C – ANALYSIS Students are divide into teams of 2 to research, collect and analyse their data with rigour and produce relevant write up, documentation, diagrams and drawings to provide the design team with the best set of information they can obtain to develop their design and business proposition.


SITE, ZONING & LOCATION

42

CULTURE

54

CLIMATE

56

NATURAL FEATURES

64

MANMADE FEATURES

68

ACCESS & CIRCULATION

72

UTILITIES & SENSORY

78

BEN & CHRIS

DARREN & SANDRA

RACHEL & QIAOROU

CIMIN & MAO

BOON & SIMON

EION & SINGRU

GRACE & LESTER


SITE, ZONING & LOCATION

42

SITE STUDIES

Organised by the Ministry of Culture, Community & Youth (MCCY) and the National Youth Council (NYC), Somerset belt 1 focuses on the youths ,who are the future leaders, and encourages them to shape their vision for the country and work with one another.

CIN O

*SCAPE As part of the extension scheme to revitalise Singapore’s Orchard Road, the Somerset Belt is planned as a youthful and energetic entertainment district.

R

The site is located adjacent to *SCAPE with a coverage of 4,000sqm and includes the Red Box building. It is a park that acts as a complimentary space to the Red Box and currently holds various temporary events such as music performances and small workshops. Currently there are no developmental controls, and it tallies with MCCY & NYC ’s original intention of public spaces and gathering areas for Youth. 1 https://youthactionplan.sg/somersetbelt/

ER

G

AN

G

Somerset Belt


OR

NELEISURE ORCHARD

CH

ORCHARD BUILDING

AR

DR

OA D

313@ SOMERSET SITE STUDIES

THE RED BOX

SOME

RSET

SITE

ROAD

TRIPLEONE SOMERSET

DEVO

NSHIR

E ROA

D

Diagrams by Kyaw Htet Paing Base image : Imagery ©2021 Maxar Technologies. Map data © 2021 Google, Urban Redevelopment Authority

43

AD RO

PAN PACIFIC SERVICED SUITES


HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT Transformation of Singapore Somerset vicinity

With origins as a plantation of Gambier and Nutmegs in the 1800s, the Somerset area grew and transformed into a Straits Chinese settlement in the 1900s. In 1920s it became a commercial retail district, and from the 70s to 90s, transformed into the mix of high end residential and retail we see today.

Slated for conservation in 1985, The Emerald Hill Shophouses were home to a number of wealthy Peranakan and Straits Chinese families, who purchased subdivided plots of plantation land. Their well restored façades, which bear intricate carvings and patterns reflect this rich cultural heritage.

1900s - Pr. Emerald Hill Shophouses

1925 - 1971 Pavilion Theatre

44

SITE STUDIES

1819 -1840 Gambier Plantations

Source: Urban Redevelopment Authority

Source: Roots.sg

Source: Roots.sg

1938 - Pr. Wellington House

1892 -1957 Lee Temple

1830s -1862 Nutmeg Orchards

1914 -1925 Palladium

1926 - Pr. Singapore Chinese Girls’ School

1900

1840s -1957 Tai Shan Ting Cemetery 1800s -1950 Kampung Teochew

1940s - Pr. 7 Grange Rd 1931 -1990 Heeren Building


In the 80s, groups of youths caused a moral panic, due to their aggressive image and petty crimes. Easily identified by their loud, garish outfits, the Centrepoint Kids were named after their go-to hangout –The Centrepoint. A street party which evolved into part of the annual National Day festivities, Swing Singapore remains one of the largest youth gatherings in

1993 - Pr. Ngee Ann City 1988 - 1992 Swing Singapore

1972 - 2008 Hotel Phoenix Specialists’ Shopping Centre 1973 - Pr. Faber House

1976 - 2005 UOL Building 1960s - Pr. Devonshire Rd Shophouses

1971 - Pr. Mandarin Orchard

1996 - Pr. National Youth Council, Youth Park

1997 - Pr. Cathay Cineleisure

Source: National Archives Of Singapore

1983 - Pr. Orchard Shopping Centre

2006 - Pr. Somerset Skate Park

The Heeren Orchard Building

2008 - Pr. Pan Pacific Service Suites 2009 - Pr. 313@somerset 2010 - Pr. *Scape 2014 - Pr. Orchard Gateway

1987 - Pr. Somerset MRT Station

Hotel Jen

2000

1985 - Pr. The Beaumont

SITE STUDIES

1980s The Centrepoint Kids

45

1965 - 1994 Orchard Theatre

2011 - Pr. Grange Infinite 2009 - Pr. The Suites @ Central 2007 - Pr. The Met

2019 - Pr. Design Orchard Grange Rd Carpark Transformation


5 ELEMENTS OF THE CITY The studio was introduced to Kevin Lynch’s seminar work in ‘The image of the city’ 1 and uses The 5 Elements of the City as a reference to study the experiences and mental images of the Youth Park and its surroundings.

SITE STUDIES

Nodes serve as social gathering points in a city. They offer different activities and can vary in size, from a public water cooler, to a shopping mall atrium.

46

Landmarks are points of reference, often iconic and memorable. They are usually unique in the context of their surroundings, and could be anything from a signboard, building, or mountain.

Edges are spatial boundaries; real (walls, buildings) or perceived (streets, rivers). They divide areas into localized spaces and can have their own demographic or activities.

Paths are the streets and sidewalks which people travel on. They aid to arrange spaces and the movements between them. Paths are usually purpose-built, but informal paths can also be created with enough use.

Districts are large areas which has common identifying characteristics. It can be divided by tangible or intangible boundaries, and evoke the general feel of the space.

1

Lynch, Kevin (1960). The Image of the City. Cambridge MA: MIT Press.



3

2

4

1

5

1. Devonshire Rd Shophouses

2. Cathay Cineleisure

3. Mandarin Hotel/Gallery

4. Ngee Ann City

5. *Scape

1960s - Pr. Mixed Use

1997 - Pr. MGT Architecture Retail

1971 - Pr. Stanley T. S. Leong Mixed Use

1993 - Pr. Raymond Woo Mixed Use

2010 - Pr. RSP Architects Youth Community Space

Singapore’s tallest building in 70s, has undergone many renovations, the latest in 2009, where its lower floors were converted to Mandarin Gallery.

Built over the exhumed Tan Shan Ting Cemetery, inspired by the Great Wall of China.

A remnant of the area’s built heritage. Not slated for conservation.


SITE STUDIES

NOTABLE BUILDINGS

49

N

7 6 8

6. Triple One Somerset

7. The Red Box

8. The Red Bus

1977 - Pr. Group 2 Architects Mixed Use

1996 - Pr. Office/Event Space

1986 - Pr. Office/Event Space

Initially the PUB Building, known for its striking brutalist architecture. Re-cladded in aluminium in 2006.

Originally christened as the National Youth Centre, under the National Youth Council, this building was later placed under *Scape’s management as the Scape Youth Centre. In 2016, it was painted red and named The Red Box, after the late Minister Mentor Lee Kwan Yew’s briefcase. It now serves as an office for the Youth Corps.

A former Leland Olympian SBS bus converted into an office by the National Youth Council.


SITE STUDIES

SITE SECTIONS

4m walking path + entrance space to the Youth Park

5m Bus stop

Grange Road

50

Youth Park

Zebra Crossing

Front of Red Box

2.25m Walkway

Entrance to the Youth Park

6m Car lane

Youth Park

Drainage

5m Car park

Green Offset

Entrance to the Youth Park


SITE STUDIES 51

Grange Road

2.25m Sheltered Walkway + Cycling Path

Green Patch

2.5 m Walkway inside the Youth Park

Red Bus


CULTURE GATHERING OF MILLENNIALS *SCAPE is the heart of the millennials’ gathering space where youth activities have been conducted over the years. Events include dance performances, music events, e-sports activities/training camps. Beside it, Orchard Cineleisure caters mostly to the youth as well.

SITE STUDIES

313@somerset, TripleOne Somerset act as crowd attractors with commercial and retail elements. The majority of the crowd includes young adults and youth, both Singaporeans and tourists.

52

ATTRACTORS

CULTURE LANDMARK The existing Red Box Building was named after the red-brief case of the late prime minister Lee Kuan Yew which he carried all the time throughout the years as he led the nation. It has become a symbol of dedication to Singapore. The building acts as an attractor for Youth to snap pictures for their social media. POTENTIAL The site can be the gateway between the commercial district and youth-oriented district. With surrounding youth-oriented programs and crowd-attracting nodes, it is vital to introduce unique system that embodies youth culture and diverts crowds to the site to rejuvenate the neglected area.

YOUTH ATTRACTO


OR CULTURE LANDMARK

SITE

YOUTH + ADULT ATTRACTOR

Diagrams by Kyaw Htet Paing Base image : Imagery ©2021 Maxar Technologies. Map data © 2021 Google, Urban Redevelopment Authority

53

YOUTH + ADULT ATTRACTOR

SITE STUDIES

YOUTH ATTRACTOR


CULTURE

54

SITE STUDIES

Current Condition

“LET NATURE TAKE ITS COURSE AND KILL ORCHARD ROAD. THE LOSS WILL NOT BE HUGE, SINCE WHAT IS ON OFFER IN TOWN, YOU COULD PROBABLY FIND ELSEWHERE IN TAMPINES, THE MARINA BAY AREA, AND EVEN JURONG.” Benjamin Lim, contributing editor for RICE media, 11th September 2017 Orchard Road along with Somerset Area has seen a decline of footfalls and sales for a number of years. The success of Singapore Urban Redevelopment Authority’s masterplans over the years have brought about tremendous growth in the heartlands. Good transportation and connectivity is prevalent and jobs are closer to homes. Each new towns/regions have clear, defined public spaces for recreation and healthy living along with integrated community centres, hubs and numerous suburban malls serving the residents. These have posed a great challenge to the Orchard Road and Somerset Areas. Further development of newer and larger scale retail concept malls such as Jewel at Changi Airport and Marina Bay Sands have also become local rivals to the areas. Elsewhere, the shopping and retail scenes of Singapore’s Southeast Asian neighbours are thriving with cities like Bangkok offering a wide range of experiences from affordable local goods to high end luxury products. There is a strong local identity to those areas which greatly attracts shoppers and visitors.

“ Today, none of our three children, nor their friends, hang out in Orchard Road. Like most Singaporeans (and foreigners), there are many other compelling alternatives vying for their attention.” Christopher Tan, Senior Transport Correspondent, The Straits Times


CULTURE Social Media Analysis

OUR TAMPINES HUB

FACEBOOK 39.000 likes 39.000 follows 0-60 likes per post

INSTAGRAM 6,000 followers 2,600 follows 30-70 likes per post

FACEBOOK 85.000 likes 89.000 follows 10-100 likes per post

INSTAGRAM 18,000 followers 5,200 follows 30-100 likes per post

*Statistics as of 14th June 2020

From these social network statistics one can see the quantified emergence of heartland malls. Due to their similarities in function, the malls in orchard no longer have an edge over these neighbourhood malls, which due to their accessibility, have become much more compelling alternatives. At the same time, two spaces in Orchard are observed to be thriving: the Central Library, and library@orchard. These spaces are found to be favoured over neighbourhood libraries because unlike neighbourhood libraries, which tend to be near identical, these two libraries have unique attributes.

The Central Library is popular because of its large open study spaces with panoramic views. Library@orchard hosts artist residencies and regular workshops. This elements help them differentiate themselves from the typical public library, and give them a relevance in this age where neighbourhood centres have become just as developed as central locations.

55

SITE STUDIES

*SCAPE


CLIMATE

56

SITE STUDIES

ANNUAL WINDROSE When designing spaces for social interaction, regardless of the target audience, user comfort plays a key role in the project’s success. Appropriately addressing the climatic conditions of the site can not only attract users to a space, but retain them as well. The Somerset area is lined with glass walled, airconditioned malls – the obvious solution to Singapore’s tropical climate. An active solution to combating the tropics’ main challenges: heavy downpours in seasons of high rainfall, and the ever-present equatorial sunshine.

SUMMER SOLSTICE WINDROSE

By understanding the seasonal shifts in climate conditions, and site-specific traits like wind direction and solar hours, designers can craft user experiences in a number of ways. Passive solutions to mitigating the elements, and idiosyncrasies in weather patterns can be exploited to create unique encounters amidst the sea of glass boxes.

WINTER SOLSTICE WINDROSE


TEMPERATURE

33.5

Average per month (deg)

29.2

26.7

28.4

Mean

SITE STUDIES

Max

24.5 57

Min

RAINFALL

30.1

Average per month (mm)

10.8 1.5 12345678

91

01

11

2

Data values referenced from http://www.weather.gov.sg/climate-historical-daily (2019)


8AM-12PM

2PM-6PM

SITE STUDIES

SUMMER SOLSTICE

N

HOURS >4.0

58

4.0

WINTER SOLSTICE

3.5 3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5 1.0 0.5 0

SHADOW HOURS

The site receives the most amount of shadow hours in the morning due to the adjacent buildings, such as TripleOne Somerset. On a summer solstice morning, the southern part of the site has longer shadow hours (at least 4 hours) than the rest of the site. The total shadow hours is greater in winter solstice morning compared to summer solstice morning. Longer shadow hours occur at the northern part of the site as well as the red bus area. In the afternoon, only areas below built structures and trees have shadow hours.


AT 2M HEIGHT

AT 12M HEIGHT

HOURS

SITE STUDIES

SUMMER SOLSTICE

N

10.5

WINTER SOLSTICE

10.0 9.5 9.0 8.5 8.0 7.5 7.0 6.5 <6.0

SOLAR HOURS

The site is generally well-shaded by trees and neighbouring buildings. Hence, the site generally receives very few solar hours (less than 6 hours) at 2m height. The centre of the site experiences the longest solar hours of about 9 hours in summer and 7.5-9 hours in winter. At 12m height, majority of the site area experiences about 10.5 hours of solar activity during summer. The southern part of the site also experiences the same amount of solar hours during winter.

59

>11.0


AT 2M HEIGHT

AT12M HEIGHT

SITE STUDIES

SUMMER SOLSTICE

N

SOLAR RADIATION (kWh/m2)

450

60

405

WINTER SOLSTICE

360 315 270 225 180 135 90 45 0

SOLAR RADIATION

At 2m height, solar radiation is the highest at approximately 380kwh/m2 in the centre of the site (between pavilion and red bus) throughout the year. Sheltered areas such as under the pavilion and trees have the lowest amount of solar radiation at about 100kwh/ m2. The rest of the site areas experiences an average of about 250kwh/m2. At 12m height, the entire site area excluding areas under the trees’ canopy experiences at least 450kwh/m2 of solar radiation.


AT 2M HEIGHT

AT 12M HEIGHT N

WIND PRESSURE

WIND PRESSURE (Pa) 10

5

0

-10

WIND SPEED (m/s)

SITE STUDIES

-5

WIND SPEED

.8

.6

.4

.2

0

ANNUAL WIND

There is barely any significant wind pressure difference on the site. Hence,wind speeds at 2m height are generally low at about 0.1m/s from the north of the site. There are higher wind speeds of about 0.3m/s in the centre (in front of pavilion) and southern part of the site at 2m height. Wind speeds are higher at about 1m/s at the12m height on site due to lesser obstructions such as buildings and trees.

61

1.0


AT 2M HEIGHT

AT 12M HEIGHT N

WIND PRESSURE

WIND PRESSURE (Pa) 10

5

0

-5

SITE STUDIES

-10

WIND SPEED (m/s)

62

1.0

WIND SPEED

.8

.6

.4

.2

0

NORTHEAST MONSOON WIND The prevailing wind comes from the north and northeast during northeast monsoon season. At 2m height, there is slight wind pressure difference at the centre and southwest parts of the site. Hence, the northern winds tend to direct towards these low pressure regions. Similar to previous pages, there are higher wind speeds in the centre (in front of pavilion) and southern part of the site. Wind speeds are at about 1m/s at the 12m height.


AT 2M HEIGHT

AT 12M HEIGHT N

WIND PRESSURE

WIND PRESSURE (Pa) 10

5

0

-10

WIND SPEED (m/s)

SITE STUDIES

-5

WIND SPEED

.8

.6

.4

.2

0

SOUTHWEST MONSOON WIND The prevailing wind comes from the south during southwest monsoon season. At 2m height, there is slight wind pressure difference at the red box. Hence, the southern winds tends to be direct towards the low pressure region behind the red box. Similar to previous pages, there are higher wind speeds in the centre (in front of pavilion) and southern part of the site. Wind speeds are at about 1m/s at the 12m height.

63

1.0


Singapore’s attention to the incorporation of green into its heavily developed city has been lauded world-wide. This City in a Garden is full of flora and fauna, which holds an interesting opportunity; to take this idea of ‘green’ past its buzzword status and explore what it means to design with respect to the natural environment.

5.

H E LI

C O NI

CE

FE R N TREE

I CH

N E S E C R OT O

6.

2.

F L E D F A N PA

64

N

SITE STUDIES

F RU

LM

1.

NATURAL FEATURES

N G E JAS M

W 7.

I

HE

ILD P EPP E R

DGE BAMBO

E

O

O

RA

AIN TREE

N

4.

3. R

8.

In a society that is increasingly aware of the natural environment and our social responsibility towards it, what you do with the natural features on a site can supplement or negate your project’s image. On top of this, like climate, certain natural features unique to the site can provide opportunities for interesting user experiences.


PLANT SPECIES 1 3 4

5

1 3 6

8

3 3

3

7 3

3

3 5

3

3

SITE STUDIES

4

2

65

1


66

SITE STUDIES

SITE BIODIVERSITY


N W E

67

SITE STUDIES

S

Images from Unsplash


S

1. D

TRIA

M O NY

S

OU

TS I D E N G E

N CIT Y

2 . B I G ST

AN

EP

HAR

E

3.

68

Sculpture Liu Ji Lin 1995

AK

A LO N G O R

RD

Sculpture Chong Fa Cheong 1995

S HE

ARD

3. B E

D A K-B U D

CH

BU 3.

NC

SITE STUDIES

IS

Street Furniture 2009

SITE MATERIALS & FACILITIES Taking into consideration the existing materials used on site can inform the design decisions made in projects. Additionally, the Youth Park has distinct infrastructure which provide a number of facilities, with varying degrees of public access. Projects can leverage on such spaces to facilitate activities that their urban interventions cannot accommodate.

O U TS I D E W

AA

LS

Orchard Rd is home to an eclectic mix of street art pieces which add a layer of vibrance to pedestrians’ journeys. Street furniture adds to this experience; a space to stop, rest and take in the sights.

PS

M

NE

URBAN STREET FEATURES

E

TED GLAS

ST

RA

1. B I G

O

PA

EC

MANMADE FEATURES


1 1

3 2 2 3

69

SITE STUDIES

1

URBAN STREET FEATURES Existing Buildings

Informal Seating

Roads

Public Art Installations

Site


C 1.

SITE MATERIALS

R E A M TILE S

.C

ARP

AR K B R IC

K

4

SITE STUDIES

3

1

5

70

6

2

7

4.

S L AT E T I L E S

5.

C O N C RETE

6.

PAV E M E N T

A R M AC 7. T


T

LIF

OF FIC

E

S

STA IR

OM

RO

NG

ETI

ME

NG

ETI

ME

OF

T

LIF

E

S

STA IR

71

FIC

LET

TO I

OM

RO

T

LIF

S

STA IR

NG E

STA IRS

STA IRS

CE

OF FI

OU PAV TDOO ILIO R N

AC T RO IVITY OM

LO U

SITE STUDIES

FIC E

OF

M PU ULTIRPO HA SE LL

AIR S

ME E RO TING OM ST

OU PAV TDOO ILIO R N

SITE FACILITIES


The Orchard area has long been a hotspot of activity, and whether it’s via public transport, on foot, or by car, very accessible. Understanding how the Youth Park site connects to this network of roads, rails and walkways will be useful in identifying the challenges and opportunities that come with it.

72

SITE STUDIES

ACCESS & CIRCULATION

Sitting off the main shopping street means that the site receives less footfall, an issue further exacerbated by the roads which deter pedestrians from wandering onto its grounds. Analysing the ground level activity in the area could produce a means of drawing this activity towards the site. Identifying the surrounding traffic routes could bring about new proposals for alternative routes which better serve the site.


SITE STUDIES 73

LARGER SITE CONTEXT Existing Buildings Roads Site


74

SITE STUDIES

THE ISTANA

Somerset MRT PENANG ROAD OPEN SPACE

SITE CONNECTIVITY

Pedestrian Crossing

Existing Buildings

Bus Stops

Primary Roads

Roads

Surface Lots

Secondary Roads

Site

MRT Station

Overhead Bridge


SITE STUDIES 75

VEHICULAR ACCESS Roads

Loading/Unloading Bay

Potential Space for Loading

Site

Passenger Dropoffs

Vehicle Lane

Parking Lot

Vehicle Entrance/Exit

Paid Gantry


SITE STUDIES 76

GROUND LEVEL ACTIVITY Activity Area of Influence Pedestrian Circulation Site


HIGH HIGH

0900

0800

0900

1000

1100

1200

1300

1400

1500

1600

1000

1100

1200

1300

1400

1500

1600

*SCAPE

MANDARIN GALLERY

*SCAPE

MANDARIN GALLERY

1700

1800

1900

2000

2100

2200

2300

0000

1700

1800

1900

2000

2100

2200

2300

0000

DISCOVERY WALK DISCOVERY WALK

YOUTH PARK YOUTH PARK

77

0800

SITE STUDIES

LOW LOW MED MED

WEEKDAY PEDESTRIAN FLOW

LOW LOW

MED MED

HIGH HIGH

WEEKEND PEDESTRIAN FLOW

0800

0900

0800

0900

1000

1100

1200

1300

1400

1500

1600

1000

1100

1200

1300

1400

1500

1600

*SCAPE

MANDARIN GALLERY

*SCAPE

MANDARIN GALLERY

1700

1800

1900

2000

2100

2200

2300

0000

1700

1800

1900

2000

2100

2200

2300

0000

DISCOVERY WALK DISCOVERY WALK

YOUTH PARK YOUTH PARK


SENSORY & UTILITY

SITE STUDIES

Existing on-site utilities include numerous electrical points and lighting infrastructure, which can inform the placement of programs on the site.

78

UTILITY

SENSORY The sensory experience – sights and sounds which accompany the site, are varied; from brightly lit malls and live music, to the humble street-lamps and buzz of traffic, each contributing to the textures that give the Somerset area its character.


Floodlight Floodlight

SITE UTILITIES Floodlight

Lamp post Lamp post

Floodlight

Lamp post

Lamp post Street

lamp

Street lamp

StreetStreet lamp

lamp

Double-sided Street lamp

Double-sided

Double-sided Street lamp

Double-sided Street lamp

Double-sided Street lamp

Floodlight Drainage

Drainage Drainage

Drainage

Bollard Bollard Bollard

Drainage Bollard

Floodlight Road Floodlight light Lamp post

Electrical socket

Electrical socket Electric Box

Electrical socket Electric Box

Electrical box Electric Box

Lamp post Lamp Lamp post Street post lamp Floodlight

Lamp post

Street Street lamplamp Street lamp Street lamp

Double-sided Street lamp

Double-sided Street lamp

Drainage

Bollard

Double-sided Street lamp Double-sided Street lamp Drainage

Electrical socket Electric Box

Drainage Drainage Bollard Bollard Bollard socket Electrical

SITE STUDIES

Electric Box

Electrical socket Electric Box Electrical socket Electric Box Electric Box

79

Bollard Electrical socket

Electrical Socket


1000

3100

SITE STUDIES

10100

SITE LIGHTING

LAMP POST

80

STREET LAMP

ACOUSTIC SPLINES ACTIVE SPLINE INTERSECTING SPLINE QUIET SPLINE

Soft

Loud

Quiet

Active

FLOOD LIGHT

BOLLARD

FLOOD LIGHT


STREET VITALITY

SITE STUDIES

SOUND MAPPING

Loud

Quiet

Loud

81

Quiet

LIGHTING ANALYSIS

AS PERCEIVED IN NIGHT IMAGES

Dim

Bright

LIGHTING ANALYSIS

SITE UTILITIES

Dim

Bright


82

SITE STUDIES

A A C

B

B

C

D

D


I N E L EI S U R

E

:

A GR

N GE RD C AR

PA R

K

B

A: C

SITE VIEWS B

C: *S C A PE

D: G

RA N GE RD

83

C

SITE STUDIES

A

O

HI NS

RE RD SHO

PH

O

US

EV

E

ES

E: D

D


CREATIVE PLACEMAKING IN SINGAPORE: A CRITICAL REFLECTION ASSISTANT PROFESSOR HOE SU FERN, ARTS AND CULTURE MANAGEMENT PROGRAMME COORDINATOR SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES / SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT UNIVERSITY


Fuzzy Concepts Creative placemaking focuses on arts-led, place based, community-oriented development through multi-sectoral partnerships (Markusen and Gadwa, 2010). In particular it champions the arts and creativity as critical elements to improving the quality and vitality of a place (Hoe, 2019). However, as an emergent form of policy and planning practice, its swift adoption has led to much confusion and consternation over its constituents, tenets and actual impact.

Introduction All across the globe, there has been increasing recognition of the transformative power of creative placemaking to revive the economic and cultural life of cities. Singapore is no exception. Since 2008, the Singapore government has been engaged in a concerted effort to placemake Singapore into a culturally-vibrant cityscape with “heart and soul”. However, despite its increasing global popularity, what constitutes creative placemaking and its processes remain vague and tenuous. Notably, scant critical attention has also been paid on how Singapore has tried to adopt this global buzzword, and its impact on the localised dynamics of urban spaces and arts practices. Drawing on personal reflections from my pedagogical and research experiences, this article will illuminate the current challenges obstructing creative placemaking from being truly embraced and embedded within the urban life of Singapore. Importantly, this article will highlight creative placemaking as an important turn in Singapore’s urban planning and policy, and advocate for the importance of higher education teaching as a critical means to enable this turn.

This lack of a clear understanding of creative place making is one key challenge facing its adoption in Singapore. This is mainly because the official term used in urban planning policies is “place manage ment.” The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) defines place management as “a coordinated, multi-stakeholder approach to improving precincts and making them more attractive for the benefit of its users” (Hoe and Liu 2016). Today, place management is a whole -of-government urban rejuvenation policy, which aims to enliven and transform Singapore into an inclusive cityscape that fosters a strong sense of place attachment, community and belonging. It is under this umbrella policy of “place management” that creative placemaking emerged as a buzzword in Singapore. Apart from creative placemaking, this umbrella also includes other terms like place marketing, place maintenance, signage, wayfinding, events and programming. This conflation of diverse terms under one large umbrella term has resulted in a lack of clarity and confusion in terms of what creative placemaking actually entails. This lack of clarity has trickled down to actual policy implementation and practice, as well as pedagogical training. Many real-life projects as well as student project proposals tend to propose transient arts programming as an expedient means to activate spaces in the name of placemaking. One real-life example is the dependence of arts festivals to activate cultural precincts such as Bras Basah.Bugis, Kampong Glam


and Civic District. For instance, the anchor place making programme for the Bras Basah.Bugis precinct is the Singapore Night Festival, which is an annual precinct-wide nocturnal arts festival known for its light art installations. Other placemaking projects that rely heavily on transient arts programming include car-free events that celebrate street closures, and once -off arts events to activate disused buildings and public spaces. While these ephemeral arts programmes should be commended for broadening arts access to wider publics and demonstrating the latent capacities of the arts to inspire vernacular creativity, arts programming should not be celebrated as the quintessential exemplar of creative placemaking. The Pitfalls of “Prove It” The lack of clarity about creative placemaking is worsened by the need to substantiate return on investment. The new resources and opportunities for creative placemaking come with the pressure to report clear results and outcomes. Increasingly, both real-life and student project proposals are also expected to demonstrate their operational feasibility and project expected socio-economic returns. This has resulted in the utilisation of quantitative data as key performance indicators, as well as a reliance on tried-and-tested measures as standard operating practices. This is evident in how footfall is still used as a benchmark for success for placemaking projects. Consequently, to increase footfall, placemaking projects tend to rely on cliché hacks such as the inclusion of instagrammable elements such as trendy “hipster” food and light projections to attract audiences. Hence, one has to manage expectations in terms of evaluating the impact of creative placemaking. As Ann Markusen (2013, p. 297), the original co-author be hind the white paper that sparked off the global popularity of creative placemaking, questions: “how can we expect projects that hope to change the culture, participation, physical environment and local economy to show anything in a period of one, two, three

years?” Existing case studies from the fields of urban planning, arts participation and community engage ment have demonstrated that changes in place entail long periods of time. Finding data to chart change and impact over time adequately and successfully is also an existing challenge. Hence, instead of instrumentalising the arts as an expedient tool for immediate quantitative data as evidence of elusive outcomes like vibrancy and buzz, those initiating and/or funding creative placemaking projects should be cognizant of the importance of the process, and encourage the project team to spend time in the identified sites and with their communities to truly understand how the arts will be able to meet real needs and will not compromise existing traditions and practices. As architect William Lim (2012) reminds, the city must be recognized as one that is in a “state of incompleteness”, with spaces that are interminate and open to continuous unforeseen changes and unplanned growth. Conclusion: Making Space for Creative Placemaking This article has briefly highlighted challenges confronting creative placemaking in Singapore, from definitional problems to evaluative and measurement conundrums. Despite the aforementioned challenges, the growing popularity of creative placemaking is an optimistic turn in Singapore’s urban policy, planning and pedagogical training. The growing number of creative placemaking projects particularly by artists and arts organisations – such as Cassia Kaki, an artsbased community project that engaged the relocated seniors at Cassia Crescent by ArtsWok Collaborative – demonstrates the generative potential of creative placemaking to deepen sense of place and belonging to Singapore. Importantly, it also enables exposure and immersion in the arts at the most ordinary spaces and unexpected everyday moments. One way to better integrate and expand the field of creative placemaking into the social and urban life


References Hoe, S. F. (2019). From liveable to lovable city: the role of the arts in placemaking Singapore. In Social Space, July. Available at: https://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/lien_research/174/ [accessed 9 Jan 2021]. Hoe, S. F., and Liu, J. (2016). IPS-SAM Spotlight on Cultural Policy Series Two: Full Report on Roundtable on Place Management and Placemaking in Singapore. Available at: https:// ink.library.smu.edu.sg/soss_research/2215/ [accessed 9 Jan 2021].

Markusen, A. (2013). Fuzzy concepts, proxy data: why indicators would not track creative placemaking success. International Journal of Urban Sciences 17 (3), 291 – 303. Markusen, A. and Gadwa, A. (2010). Creative Placemaking. Washington, DC: National Endowment for the Arts.

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Lim, W. S. W. (2012). Incomplete Urbanism: A Critical Urban Strategy for Emerging Economies. Singapore World Scientific Publishing.

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of Singapore is through pedagogical training, particularly in terms of including it into higher education curriculum that is interested in the role of arts and culture in urban life. The teaching of creative placemaking is a form of inter-disciplinary and engaged cultural research that is collaborative, cross-sectoral and cosmopolitan. A hands-on and engaged teaching space, like the Youth-Topia studio project conducted by SUTD, offers a productive and supportive environment to interrogate, unpack and work through difficult conversations about how contemporary practice like creative placemaking exists in the newness of the world. The context-specificity of creative placemaking demands that students do not engage in rote learning but are exposed to different ways of thinking and doing things. Rather, the community-engaged practices of creative placemaking ensure that students are confronted by real-world research problems that are engaged with social life and experience, and are exposed to the differing practices, stories and histories of urban life. The higher education space thus enables positive spillovers including human capital, knowledge transfer and exchange. Most importantly, by equipping students to become self-reflexive cultural citizens, pedagogical training in creative placemaking moves us closer to a future of equitable, caring and sustainable communities in which everyone has a voice and agency to address and contribute to community-defined outcomes and enabling a sense of place.


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CREAT to make something new, invent something


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BLK 113

LUN CI MIN & PENG MAOYU

STOMPING GROUND GRACE SIM & LESTER LIM

PROJECT VEST EION GOH & TOH SING RU



BLK 113 LUN CI MIN & PENG MAOYU

Top: 3D Printed Bundle Joints Left: Rattan facade, benches to sit and chill

Empat Bundle (Batik ver.) Diameter: 130mm Height: 60mm Weight:144g Bamboos: x4 Material: PLA/ABS

Sembilan Bundle (Batik ver.) Diameter: 130mm Height: 60mm Weight:150g Bamboos: x9 Material: PLA/ABS

As devices have grown more advanced, humans have seemingly regressed into dull existence with low levels of tactility. Youth in Singapore seeking respite from the increasingly digitised world has thus led to more interest in traditional crafts. Our vision for the project is to create an artists village for the preservation of traditional crafts in Singapore by nurturing a new generation of makers by reviving modern day and traditional crafts. The proposal aims to rejuvenate SCAPE Youth Park into a human and community-centric local marketplace that plays a key role in supporting craft practice. Here, contemporary and traditional craft practices can be found to provide both locals and youths with unique hands-on experiences by our very own local artisans. In this project, relationship between architects and artisans is explored. Craft is the fulcrum of both professions and architecture and design are tightly linked to the active material world. From the perspective of a craftsman, deciding the type of materials to use directly affects the experience of making. For architecture, the choice of materials can have a direct influence to define spatial organisation. By adopting the concept of appreciating the ‘old’ while embracing the ‘new’, colourful bamboo poles that are ubiquitously used in HDB estates to sun clothing are crafted with customized 3D-printed bundle joints to create the architecture.

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Tiga Bundle (Batik ver.) Diameter: 130mm Height: 60mm Weight:150g Bamboos: x3 Material: PLA/ABS

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Dua Bundle (Batik ver.) Diameter: 130mm Height: 20mm Weight:144g Bamboos: x2 Material: PLA/ABS


What is craft? The idea and interest of making; understanding the methodological process of how an artefact is created, who it is made by and what is the significance of their making to a society. Modern-Day Craft

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Provides opportunity to connect traditional artisan to the urban consumer in the midst of Singapore’s premier shopping district of Orchard Road and Somerset Area. Proposal can also influence new genre of aspirational craft makers such as students, young adults and tourists.

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Providing hands-on engagement in a hands-off economy. Craft as a means of offering a more tangible moral compass in the age of Consumerism and throwaway culture.

From Left to Right: Woven rattan chair, Paints of an artist, Moulding of a pot on the pottery wheel, Crafting with glass, Indonesian Batik art Images from Unsplash


Right: Batik Displays at the Exhibition Marquee


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6min

12min

Schools Residential Building Capacity Large (>100pax), Med (~50pax), Small (10-20pax)

Main Roads Secondary Roads Bus Routes


Schools & Residential

Mapping of regional craft programs by building capacity. A 6-12 min walking radar is included to see overlaps and adjacency of programs.

Potential target audiences of students and residents were located from nearby academies and accommodations.

Vehicle Transport Routes

Concept Adaptability

Site is well connected to main expressway, secondary roads and public transportations linking the adjacent neighbourhood to the site .

Taking into the account of temporary pop-up strategy, we look into the potential relocation sites for the Blk 113 experiences.

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Regional Analysis

ngee ann city design orchard *scape dhoby gaut green

river valley school

kim seng park

aspen heights

fort canning park

national gallery


Somerset Rd

Gr an

ge

Rd

The Red

Bo

x

*Scape

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Triple One Somerset

Devonshire Rd

Devonshire Rd Shophouses

Bamboo Shelter Walk The original site was given as The *Scape Youth Park, located in the shopping hub of Singapore. However, we realized there is a disconnect between the site and the rest

Block 113 Shelter Walk MRT Entrance

Sitting & Chilling Benches

Sponsor Advertisements

111 SOMERSET

of the Somerset Belt as it is located at a cross-road junction. Thus, we proposed to welcome visitors to the site from four entrances, creating a Blk 113 bamboo shelter walk covering the perimeter of the site.

Performance Zone

Post-it Wall

The Metz

Exhibition Posters

TripleOne Somerset Drop-off Point Blk 113 Gallery Walk


KPO

Orchard Central

Penang Rd

Top: Overlaps of various mappings give rise to potential of site to be developed as a crafting node bridging the East and West.

Skate

Right: Various site mappings

Killin ey R d

Park

Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia CREATE - BLK 113

Somerset MRT

Somerset

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Rainbow Bamboo Shelter Walk

Exeter Rd

Comcentre

Top: The Rainbow Bamboo Shelter Walk which surrounds the site

We wanted to bring the Blk 113 experience to visitors before they even stepped into the site. Events and exhibitions are curated along the walk ranging from active to quiet spaces, complimenting the Somerset Belt’s natural conditions.

Bottom: Unrolled elevation, a series of creative experiences

The Red Box

Unloading Carpark

Exhibition Marquee

Blk 113 Galleries Blk 113 Workshops

Images from Unsplash


2. Making Use of Vertical Height

3. Site Shading

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1. A Linear Progression of Programs

40m

4. Dispersal of Programs Public Exhibitions

5. Walking Radii for Entryways & Shading Makerspace

Public Space

80m

6. Circulation & Zoning

Workshops

Top: Parti Diagram (Plan) Bottom: Parti Diagram (Section)

9m 6m 3m

1.

2.

4.


Programs The program zoning of Blk 113 is classified into three types namely, craft workshops, exhibitions and mingle courtyards. These three zones are strategically scattered across the site. Craft Workshops

F&B offerings that feature forgotten local delights such as Malay/Chinese kuehs, kachang puteh and traditional baked goods. Comfortable seating for groups are also designed to accommodate various activities. Exhibitions and Performances Top: Parti Diagram (Plan)

Alongside thematic workshops, dedicated exhibition areas are designed to showcase works by masters and participants of the workshop.

Bottom: Parti Diagram (Section) Images from Unsplash

Painting

Furniture-making

Rattan Weaving

Saori Weaving

Pottery

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Spaces to mingle and rest

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Introducing hands-on experiences to the youths with monthly thematic crafts from various cultures and traditions, such as Batik painting, Lantern Making etc.


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1. Exhibition Marquee 2. Ice-Cream Truck 3. Kacang Puteh Truck 4. Ma-ma Shops 5. Oasis Courtyard 6. Main Exhibition 7. Thematic Workshop Images from Unsplash & Pixabay

Programs


Floor Plans The series of floorplans show the programmatic layout of the site, and floorplans to illustrate the incorporation of flora between the adjacencies of each programme.

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The roof plan shows how the bamboo roofscapes give Blk 113 a unique architectural identity.

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First Storey Plan


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Second Storey Plan

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Roof Plan

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bition

ibition nstive

rket

1

2

3

4

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orm into ets which aft items.

xhibition

urse

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on area for and inter-

nto a fun bamboo at our

age

or themed jing

ace

6

the caransformed ace.

5

The easy-to-install structural design allows for a flexibility in construction and the creation of different functional elements. Site Configurations


1. Shelter Exhibition Closed sheltered exhibition space for weather sensitive exhibits. 2. Pop-Up Market Carpark space transform into temporary flea markets which tie in together with craft items.

3. Open-Air Exhibition Open space exhibition area for gallery style displays and interactions. 4. Obstacle Course Carpark transforms into a fun playground made of bamboo structures. Have a go at our obstacle course!

5. Concert Stage Performance space for themed exhibition such as Beijing Opera. 6. Storage Space During larger events, the carpark can be easily transformed into extra storage space. Left: Site Configurations Bottom: Pottery displays set in the facade


triple one somerset

The red box

some

rset

rd


devonshire sho

rd

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devonshire

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phouses

e rd

g gran

Axonometric



Section AA

Crafters, artisans and exhibition goers interact on an intimate scale, through the expanse of nature.


Section BB


PLA 3D Printed Bundle Joint (9 pcs batik ver.) with Grooved Facade (Water Channel) 25mm Bamboo (Coloured Plastic Wrap) Roof Polycarbonate Sheet M5-0.8x12mm Screw 25mm Raw Bamboo

PLA 3D Printed Bundle Joint (2 pcs batik ver.) PLA 3D Printed Rotational Joint 25mm Raw Bamboo

PLA 3D Printed Bundle Joint (2 pcs batik ver.) 25mm Bamboo (Coloured Plastic Wrap) M5-0.8x12mm Screw Roof Polycarbonate Sheet PLA 3D Printed Bundle Joint (3 pcs batik ver.) 25mm Raw Bamboo

25mm Raw Bamboo PLA 3D Printed Bundle Joint (9 pcs batik ver.) C25 Standardized Mix Concrete (Foundation)

Left: Construction Details Right: Interior of Workshop Spaces


Left: Cladding existing Red Box with bamboos in gradient colour to achieve design consistency. Right: The image shows an axonometric drawing of the site, depicting how the site has potential to be transformed into a unique urban experience. The project is envisioned as unique crafting ‘villages’ that provide spaces for the youth to continue these crafts.



!


STOMPING GROUND GRACE SIM & LESTER LIM

Top: Layers of paint from years of graffiti art at Somerset Youth Park Left: Undulating layers of activities at Stomping Ground Graffiti Art courtesy of SlacSatu

The project’s vision is to create the “streets” for the youth, instead of keeping them off. Through discovering and understanding the site’s character and culture in the past, Stomping Ground seeks to revive the cultural essence of Singapore’s urban art scene and the other subcultures that revolve around it. The term “stomping ground” refers to a place that is a favourite/ habitual haunt for a group of people, which is what we envision for our project for the creatives who are involved in the urban scene. This will in turn create a thriving creative environment that will naturally attract the public to come and discover this space, learning and understanding about these alternative art forms that are often misunderstood as taboo culture. Coincidentally, Stompin’ Ground is the name of a pioneer hardcore band in Singapore from the 90s, who are also closely tied to the underground scene in Singapore. Ultimately, Stomping Ground is a project that brings back the Youth Park’s exciting cultural scene from the past, and propels it to the present day as a favourite haunt for the youth and a point of interest for tourists and locals alike.

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SlacSatu SG graffiti scene pioneer

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“We paint, not as an act of rebellion against the rules, but we paint because we have the passion in this creative art form and hope to preserve this street art aesthetics and culture. As we paint, we uphold street art ethics and make sure the visual contents are appropriate.”


THE SINGAPORE GRAFFITI STORY

Medley Alley @ Joo Chiat

Tekka Centre Aliwal St Bras Basah Haji Lane Queen St The SubStation Coleman Bridge Amoy St Club St Chinatown St Niel Rd

SCAPE Skate Park

1995

Early pioneers Skope & Xero

Establishment of pioneering artist group- Zinc Nite Crew

EVENT: Singapore Street Festival

EVENT: Graffitude @ Laselle-SIA college

EVENT: We Bomb SAM @ Singapore Art Museum

Establishment of graffiti interest group- ARTVSTS

EVENT: Hip Hop Gig @ Somerset Youth Park

EVENT: Adidas All 24

SMRT Corporation (SMRT) trains were the targets of graffiti in 2010 and then again in 2011

CAMPAIGN: Anti-Drug Whiteboard Graffiti Drawing Competition

EVENT: Singapore Art Week

Katong Student Hostel has been transformed into a temporary “practice space”

2020

2019

2017

2017

Re-Embracing Graffiti Art

2012

2011

2010-2011

2010

2003

2003

2003

2002

2000

Establishment of Skope & Xero Operation Art Core

Vandalism Incidents

New Public Art Movement 1998

1995

Pioneers

EVENT: Aliwal Urban Art Festival

EVENT: Aliwal Urban Art Festival

Samantha Lo, became known as the Sticker Lady after her infamous My Grandfather Road incident in 2012.

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Tiong Poh Rd

Graffiti Story: Dissolving Culture The origins of graffiti started in the 1990s and quickly gained popularity and attention among many youths in the past. Graffiti was amongst other popular youth gathering activities like dancing, skateboarding, eating, jamming, and painting. Sometimes, weekly gigs and events are initiated by the youths themselves. The Youth Park was a popular spot for holding these activities throughout the years, including a significant milestone when youths were allowed to paint on the Red Box building. It was unfortunate that there were several graffiti-related incidents which sparked political tensions around the topic of vandalism. The dissolving graffiti culture is evident in recent years as more youths today had turned to digital cultures and social media for expression. There are potential benefits in reviving this art culture, even integrated with augmented reality, to allow youths to come together.

Top: Timeline of Graffiti in Singapore Adjacent: Singapore’s tumultuous relationship with graffiti


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STOMPING GROUND

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GRAFFITI @ *SCAPE

Masterplan: Graffiti Belt Augmented Reality Digital Graffiti Snacks Art Dessert Drinks Spray Paint Rental Jamming Graffiti Basic Workshop Stencil Rental

Photography Tour Graffiti Gallery Walk

GRAFFITI

Spectate Mural Paintings-in-Progress

Outdoor Concert

Meals

Digital Sticker Graphic Making Tattoo Design Canvas Jamming

MUSIC Busking MUSIC jamming

EVENTS

POP-UP market Snacks Meals

Hang-Out & Chill

Skateboarding

SPORTS

Within the site, there is a graffiti trail guiding them to a wide range of graffiti types. This trail has a strong potential to be further extended and developed to cultivate a strong youth scene in the Somerset region as it is strategically located between Scape and Somerset Skate Park which are popular spots for youth events, gatherings, and activities.

BOULDERING (Indoor)

Activation Programs Glow-in-the-Dark Paints Flea Booths Drinks

live PERFORMANCE

Hang-Out & Chill

Food

Digital Poster Design

Upcycling Graffiti

LIGHT shows

CAFE

board GAMES

BOULDERING (Outdoor) Picnic RedBox Lounge Hang-out Shopping

The project hopes to adopt a bottom-up approach culture with the youths as the starting point, providing them with a space to boldly be creative, and meet like-minded people. Complementing subcultures such as food, music, and sports would be integrated seamlessly to create a more diverse experience. The combination of profit-generating and free public programs creates a self-sustaining system, complementing one another, economically and socially. Top: Graffiti Belt, running through youth hotspots Left: Youth activities at Stomping Ground


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Site Analysis These programs come together, strategically allocated at different regions mirroring and responding to its immediate surrounding contexts. The site thus absorbs programmatic energies externally and extends them towards itself, offering itself as a centralization space bridging multiple themes and forming interactions within and beyond the site.

Top: Programmatic Diagram Top Right: Stomping Ground Roof plan Right: The view from *Scape– a series of undulating strips


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*SCAPE

S

STENCIL A stencil is an easy way to put up detailed pieces by spraying over a stencil. It produces a more detailed piece than by doing it free hand and is repeatable.

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BLOCKBUSTERS/ WILD STYLES

Red Bu

Blockbusters are used to cover a large area in a small amount of time. Blockbusters can be painted with rollers, which makes them quicker to do. Wildstyle often consists of arrows, curves, spikes and other things that non graffiti artists might not understand.

PIECE/MURAL

Seating

A piece (short for masterpiece) is a picture that has been painted free hand. They contains at least three colours and take longer to paint.

TAG/THROW-UP Includes artist’s name or identifier. A tag incorporates one colour while a throw-up incorporates more than two colours.

STICKER SLAB/POSTER PASTE-UP A poster is a quick and easy way to put up pieces. A sticker is like a downsized poster, and just as easy to execute.

Bus-Stop Creative Workshop

AUGMENTED REALITY NEW! Digital Graffiti art through the use of handphones and AR technology.

Storage Modules

UP-CYCLING PAINT ART Using recycled materials as a graffiti canvas.

HEAVEN

A heaven is a tag or artwork located in a hard-to-reach place.

Graffiti Stand-Up Wall


Spline Canvas

Back Alley Cafe

us Pop-Up Space Carpark

Red Box

Stomping Ground aims to bring out a holistic and all-rounded experience of the graffiti culture, similar to a graffiti hub, and offers different ways for people to express creativity and share their stories. It breaks down graffiti art into various types such as stencils, blockbusters, stickers, and murals. Each of these graffiti types could interest people differently. Interesting riffs off traditional graffiti include Up-cycling Paint Art, which involves painting over old unwanted material, and the Augmented Reality graffiti experience, where the public can view their graffiti projected onto the surface of the Red Bus via an AR application on their phones.

Left: Diagram of Stomping Ground’s Graffiti Trail Bottom: New Augmented Reality graffiti experience.

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SKATE PARK

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Graffiti Trail


Module Catalog Modular units of basic rectangular panels were used to build the splines which integrate easy construction and assembly approaches. These panels designed with specific angles and sizes for different purposes such as workshop spaces, bouldering walls, and storage spaces.

Categories

Boulder/Workshop

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Module Code

B1

B2

B3

Stor

B4

B5

B6

S1

Section Geometry Ergonomic Positions 80-100°

Intermediate 100-120°

Advanced

3.00 1.50 4.00

4.00 1.00 3.00 1.00

2.00 1.50

3.00 1.00

2.00 1.00 3.00 2.50 1.00 2.50

1.50 2.00 1.00 2.00 3.50 1.00 2.50

1.00 2.50 1.00 2.00 2.00 2.00

4.00

1.00 3.50 3.00 2.00 1.00 2.50

3.50

Unrolled Spline

2.00 2.00 1.00

120-135°

1.001.50 2.00

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Beginners


3.50

2.00

0.50 1.00 0.50

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F4 F5 F6

0.50

Benches

0.500.50 1.00 0.500.50

Lounge Seat

0.50 1.00 0.50

F3

0.500.500.50 1.00

F2

0.500.50 1.00 0.50 1.00

2.00

0.50

F1

0.500.500.50

1.50

1.50

1.501.00

S2

0.500.500.50 1.00 0.500.50

0.500.500.500.50

4.00

Grand Stand Seating

0.50

1.00

rage Tables & Chairs F7


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Devon

shire R d

Architectural Splines A series of splines arrayed across the site with varying heights and spatial qualities visually reflect the changes in energy and intensities at the site. Each of these splines was uniquely designed to cater to specific programs and then placed adjacent to one another, spanning across the site in a landscape of overlapping layers – like waves in an energy field.


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Construction Details Standard, modular structural modular elements were used in the module construction for easy procurement. The ergonomically sized components feature lock-in joints, making it convenient to assemble the modules by hand, without the need for high manpower and machinery.

1. Easily packed and transported to site

2. Ergonomically sized components

3. Assembly on ground

4. Hoisted up

5. Joining modules

6. Installation of panels and lighting


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1. Writer’s Alley Bar where many youths, be it skaters, dancers or graffiti artists would hang out weekly and find out about local gigs/events

2. Graffiti Ledges and AR Canvas graffiti ledges double up as standing tables for visitors to the Red Bus café, which also serves as a surface for visitors to project graffiti into it via AR

3. Jamming Studio & Stage jamming studio by day, stage by night, the flexible space is fronted by a ‘folding ground’ of landscaped steps, where crowds can sit and watch the show


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4. Open Lawn & Bouldering Zone a public garden next to open workshop modules which give the public a peek into the graffiti process, with bouldering walls on its outer surface

5. Mural Alley an homage to the OG graffiti wall where many local artists honed their craft, ground planes fold up like waves, forming new, taller surfaces for the artists to paint on

6. Sustainable Art Display a space for community powered activations like “trash to art” programs, where discarded waste can be reused as a canvas for graffiti works, and displayed


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Axonometric

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CREATE - PROJECT VEST

EION GOH & TOH SING RU

Top: Collage of the many means of artistic expression youth adopt Left: The view of Project Vest from Devonshire Rd Images from Unsplash

This inspired us to strive for the concept of impermanence and organised chaos within the site, allowing youths and artists to take charge and alter the dynamic spaces to suit their preference. The design will serve as the medium for interactions amongst youths; synthesising their ideas and changes. Project Vest is a safe space that gives youths a voice - one that allows them to freely be themselves, celebrating diversity, uniqueness and self-expression. This is done through the celebration of artistic and creative expression. The proposal acknowledges our youth’s motivations of self-discovery, finding significance in self-expression and making their mark. By inspiring our youths to explore unique ways of self-expression, they will be empowered to go on to contribute to things larger than themselves in the future.

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PROJECT VEST

With Singapore’s conservative culture, our youths lack the freedom of expression. Playful behaviour in a public setting is often frowned upon and regarded as rowdy, uncivilised and disrespectful. The pressures to conform to society’s standards have severely restricted the growth and autonomy of our young individuals.


2. Impose a grid within the shading boundaries

3.Identify nodes under shade

4. Hug nodes

5. Active vs Quiet zones

6. Establish pedestrian circulation

5. Primary and Secondary circulation

6. Transport nodes

7. In-between courtyards

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1. Blank slate, keeping only the mature trees


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Planning strategy Through a systematic layering of grids, programs and circulation, voids and positive spaces are carved and divided, forming a series of clusters and zones. This creates a flexible system which has indoor, semi-outdoor and outdoor spaces.

Combined site diagram


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Top: Variety of roof heights and material opacity to provide lighting and ventilation Top Right: Ground Floor Plan Right: Sectional Perspective across site


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Modules

With this flexibility in configuration, Project Vest takes on a certain dynamism; youth are given the power to alter the spaces to suit their needs.

2.1m

2.5m

4.78m2

19.12m2

9.56m2

28.86m2

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The triangle was chosen as the basic modular unit. Based on the spatial requirements of each program, a number of triangular modules are combined to form the desired space. Panels are hinged and fully collapsible. The modules are designed to be porous, to encourage visual connection between the studio spaces and passers-by, as well as to provide sufficient air circulation.

Temporary Food Kiosk Finger foods & Drinks

Body Art Studio Henna/Body Painting


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Tech Space Storage/Computer/ Machinery Rooms

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Display Graffiti Arts Showcase

Body Art Studio Henna/Tattoo/Body Painting


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Body Art Studio Henna/Body Painting

Large Crafts Studio Wood/Metal/Glass Works


Construction Details

12mm Polycarbonate Sheets Equilateral Triangles Timber Panels Foldable Louvres

Ceiling Fan Tube Fluorescent Lighting

Aluminium Profiles Standard Square, Rectangle & Custom Triangle Profiles

Steel Ground Anchors

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Aluminium Cap Termination Point Rubber Cap Waterproof Seal

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The components are modular for straightforward construction, as well as easily collapsible to aid in storage and transportation. Inspired by Michael Murphy’s ‘architecture that’s built to heal’, our team envisions collaborating with design students to plan and assemble the entire architecture, fostering a stronger sense of accomplishment and ownership, and allowing the finished site to truly belong to the youth.


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The indoor, semi-outdoor and outdoor spaces of Project Vest, coupled with the unique aspects afforded by the site create zones of different character. The intimate back alley is a well-shaded space for artists to showcase art in a private and cosy setting. A quiet break-away from the bustling main circulation, pop-up food and drink stalls can populate this area, while the walls can be used for graffiti expression. Inner courtyards act as shared spaces for collaboration. Demarcated by a painted visual boundary, resident artists can collaborate and showcase their creative process in full view of the public eye. Just behind the bus-stop, an open-air exhibition space for outdoor exhibitions, art installations and even performances grabs the attention of passers-by. Similarly, the naturally-cooled southern end of the site is a great space for artists to engage in larger scale activities, or even just as a space to sit and enjoy the shade.

Top: Break-Away Back Alley Left: Artists at work, in the public eye Right: A courtyard of collaboration


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Axonometric

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ACTIVE SPACES FOR THE ACTIVE YOUTHS AUSTEN CHAN, DIRECTOR OF WASAA ARCHITECTS & ASSOCIATES


When we think about ‘Public Space’, a picture of children running around joyfully with their parents watching close by comes to mind. Parks, urban squares, and playgrounds are typically designed with these users in mind, resulting in family-oriented spaces. In the past decades, little thought has been given to the youth demographic, except when related to restrictions.

“Young people represent a vital citizen group with legitimate rights to occupy and shape their public environments, yet they are often driven out of public places by adult users, restrictive bylaws, or hostile designs.” Ben Shirtcliff Designing for the youth has been a challenge throughout the generations. Traditionally, many local councils dictate how spaces should be designed, working together with architects and designers with a topdown prescriptive approach. Behavioural experts and anthropologists are brought in to advise on how not to create spaces that encourage loitering and anti-social behaviour. The truth of the matter is that the youth of today are a highly vibrant and active community of individuals, and policy makers should be dedicating public spaces for them to freely utilize and enjoy. Only then can they build a sense of belonging to these environments, and be able to discover themselves without judgement, developing their social, cognitive and emotional self. The role of designers of such public spaces catering to youth should start with a deep understanding of the youth culture, as well as their aspirations as a generation.

‘First life, then spaces, then buildings – the other way around never works’ – Jan Gehl. Only in recent years has the collaborative approach been taken more seriously by local governments and

policy makers. Active engagement with youth and se rious considerations for their opinions and suggestions have created an environment for youth to express their desires for the future. In many such sessions, it has been noticed that the youth are multi-faceted, and that the one thing that remains consistent is the desire to express themselves through activities. Whether it is sports, music, technology, or any of the numerous sub-cultures in between, the youth of today are searching for other like -minded individuals to form communities to build and share their dreams, and urban designers and architects play a pivotal role to ensure that such spaces exist. Another interesting finding from community consultations with youths is how they not only wish to be able to express their diversity of self, but also to immerse themselves into the passions of others. The exploration of new thoughts and ideas is often only kindled in unfamiliar environments. Whether passive as a visiting spectator, or active physical participation, young people love to try new things, to enhance what they already know about life, and possibly add a new dimension to their current lifestyles. Being in a space that ignites the senses sparks the youthful spirit to reach wider and higher. Whether intentional or purely through chance encounters, spaces form the canvas for such opportunities for active interactions, and much more has to be done to ensure that the vibrant and dynamic community of youth thrive today.


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CONS reuse; give new life to waste resources


S.A.S.H

RACHEL SONG & WANG QIAOROU

PLASTI-CITY SANDRA CHAN & DARREN HO

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S.A.S.H RACHEL SONG & WANG QIAOROU

In 2019, National Environment Agency of Singapore (NEA) reported that more than 160,000 tonnes of textile and leather waste were disposed of by Singaporeans, of which only 4 percent was recycled. Singapore’s only landfill at Semakau Landfill, is projected to run out of space in 2035 and will not be able to accommodate more textile waste in the near future. In an attempt to slow down the effects of fast fashion, S.A.S.H (swap and sass home) promotes upcycling movement and sustainable fashion to increase the lifetime usage of textiles. Youths are increasingly aware of the environmental implications of fast fashion and this has helped upcycling gain traction as a growing trend amongst youths. The ease of accessibility and inexpensive nature of upcycling further expedite the growth. Through S.A.S.H, like-minded youths are empowered as they will have a dedicated platform to express their creativity and concerns for sustainability. The success of S.A.S.H will also lead to more support of the small local businesses that share the same sustainable visions and have a passion for artisanal handmade craftsmanship.


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This is a mapping of textiles along the stretch of Orchard Road. There is an abundance of clothing stores but only few tailors and five clothes recycling points, which are tucked away in the corners of clothing stores. Top: Diagrammatic Mapping of Orchard Rd



Model Tests The interplay of Function and Form. With a single flexible element – the ribbon, differentiated spaces are created by varying the arcs and thickness of the ribbon strip.

Left: Pop-up street along the graffiti wall features products made by local small businesses on rack-hammocks and pushcarts Bottom: Final massing on site with the Red Bus and Red Box

Combined site diagram

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Far Left: Six iterations from the model tests

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The process of crafting exploration models allows for immediate visual representation. This helped produce a final form that is complex, yet elegant.


Pop-up Store Art Installations

Clothes Donation

Cafe

Clothes Swapping


Picnic

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Thrift Flipping

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Upcycle Workshops

Food Kiosk

Community

Programmatic Allocations


Variety of roof heights and material opacity to provide lighting and ventilation.


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Top: Roof Plan Left: Open pavilion facing the entrance is a hangout spot for youths on weekdays and holds a clothes swapping event on weekends Right: Short section across Somerset Youth Park


Right: Facade designed by the community through the collection of used plastic bags, which are then deconstructed and stitched together Far Right: A cosy area tucked in the corner of the site for rest and relaxation, and facilitates conversations about sustainability via post-its on the community wall

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Bottom: A green space in between the food kiosk and the workshop studio is a great spot to relax and have a picnic




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PLASTI-CITY SANDRA CHAN & DARREN HO

Sustainable living has become one of the most concerned topics among youth nowadays. More and more local ground-up initiatives were created by youth with the aim of inculcating a zero-waste lifestyle. Plastic-city aims to create an integrated space combining education and play, allowing youth to have fun while achieving their sustainability goals. This project strives to convert the conventional recycling process into a learning journey for all to enjoy.

Top: The cycle of Play, Learn & Create Left: Evening view from the Residential Zone


The Need for Plastic Recycling

Construction Debris

Based on the 2018 Waste Statistics, Plastics have the lowest recycling rate; only 41,000 tonnes out of 909,000 tonnes of the plastic was recycled.

Ferrous Metal Paper/Cardboard Plastics Food Horticultural Waste

The Existing Solution

Wood

As a bid to nurture eco-conscious Singaporean, the National Environment Agency (NEA), has implemented Reverse Vending Machines, where the public can recycle drink containers (both aluminium and plastic).

Others

Textile/Leather

Waste Disposed of Waste Recycled

Used Slag Non-Ferrous Metal

Left: Singapore’s waste statistics by waste stream (2018)

Glass Scrap Tyres

Weight (Tonnes/Year)

Bottom: Reverse Vending Machine locations in Singapore

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Ash & Sludge

Reverse Vending Machine Youth Park Site


A range of incentives are given to encourage active recycling amongst Singaporeans. Unfortunately, the vending machines have their drawbacks. For one, there are a limited number scattered across the island. The bottles and cans also have to be flattened before they are accepted, and the machines require frequent servicing.

CONSERVE - PLASTI-CITY

When it comes to the Youth Park site, the recycling options are scarce; with just two within 10 minutes walking distance. This is miniscule compared to the number of potential waste producers in the vicinity–both commercial and residential zones, capable of creating a variety of plastic waste.

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Common waste plastics are LDPE, found in plastic bags, PET, which is found in bottles, PP, from food packaging, and HDPE, from containers. These four main plastics are constantly being put out by the 6 supermarkets and 248 F&B outlets in the vicinity.

Site Commercial Hotel Residential Vacant Plot/Park Reserved Site Civic/Community Institution

Top: Recycling Points within 5, 10 and 15 min walking distances of the site Left: Potential Waste Creation Points within 5 min walking distance of the site


Play Different activities cater to different user groups and settings. Cafe and playscapes with facades made of recycled plastic balls allow the visitors to contribute to the colours of the park.

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Learn

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Infographic posters around the site serve to educate passers-by on the different plastic waste we generate, and how we can recycle them into useful and beautiful material that we can work and play with.

Create Plastic waste is brought to the recycling stations on-site, which process the plastics, and re-cast them into recycled plastic balls, that the users can bring home as a souvenir or contribute back to the playscapes.

WHAT IS HDPE?

WHAT IS PET?

WHAT IS PP?

WHAT IS LDPE?


CONSERVE - PLASTI-CITY 165 Top Left: The cycle of Play, Learn & Create the project utilizes to educate the public on the importance of plastic recycling Top: Daytime view from the Volleyball Court Bottom Left: Elements of Play (Pink), Learn (Orange) & Create (Blue) found in Plasti-city Right: Night-time view from Grange Rd Carpark

Somerset Rd


PIN G OP E-S H AC TIV 1. Duality of the Site

2. Access Points

3. Play as a Response

4. A Journey...

5. Learn along the way

6. Create to Play

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QUIET-RESIDENTIAL

The design aims to merge the experience of playing and learning to engage the public. Play as an element responds to the duality of the site, with larger activity areas near the Active-Shopping side, and smaller activity areas towards the Quiet-Residential side. Learn is taken as a journey weave around Play elements to indulge the public’s learning journey with a playful environment. Create is where the public can recycle waste brought from home into colourful blocks and contribute it back to the facade of the playscapes.

Top: Parti Diagram Right: Roof Plan


N

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Site Sections

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Section AA

Section BB


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Section CC

Section DD


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Axonometric

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IMAGINING YOUTH-TOPIA ADIB JALAL, CO-FOUNDER & DIRECTOR OF SHOPHOUSE &CO

First written by Sir Thomas More in the 16th Century, the word ‘utopia’ was created out of the Greek word ou-topos meaning ‘no place’ or ‘nowhere’, and was simultaneously a pun on an identical word eu-topos which meant, ‘a good place’. Over the centuries, many variations of this perfect imaginary world have emerged from thinkers, writers, and even idealists who have attempted to build it into reality. A philosophy sits at the core of each variation of utopia that have been attempted. Architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier have proposed entire towns organised along modernist principles with Chandigarh being the one that got built. Biosphere 2 proposed the idea of living in a completely enclosed, entirely self-sufficient system which included its own food production capabilities alongside air, water and waste recycling systems. And if one is in search of a feminist utopia, there is Herland, a place imagined by Charlotte Perkins Gilman in 1915 where the absence of

the male species has led to a world with “no war, no crime, no hunger, no waste, no vanity, no jealousy, no heartbreak”. What would a place created and run by youths be like? What would it look like? How would it function? In 2019, Singapore’s Ministry of Community, Culture, and Youth (MCCY) commissioned an extensive public engagement and co-creation exercise to imagine the youth precinct known as the Somerset Belt . A varie ty of engagement methods including a design sprint, live idea prototypes, and community pop-ups were conducted to inform the eventual placemaking masterplan . Led by consultants, supported by civil servants, and co-created with a sampling of youths across the island, this may not have been a traditional ‘masterplan’ but was still a few degrees short of a utopia. The academic exercise offers a path to get closer to


the elusive land. Youths armed with some domain knowledge offers a unique mix of depth and innocence to explore alternate thinking; a semester offers time and space for exploration; and the suspension of some commercial and political realities releases the shackles on ideas. This publication shows the results of the exercise. But what if we could go even further? Imagine a precinct, completely run by youths. Where all decisions including technical, financial, and operational matters, are decided by youths. Imagine an urban area, perhaps sandboxed from the rest of its neighbours, that is regulated and managed in any way that the youths saw fit without fear of their political capital or career trajectories. Imagine a place that repels non-youths by design. “Carparks? We don’t need carparks since we don’t drive.” “No busking, no skating, no smoking zones? Let’s have no rules zone instead!” “Finance? We’re all broke anyway so lets launch an ICO (Initial Coin Offering) and run the entire precinct on our own cryptocurrency!” “No more paternalistic government youth support schemes! Yes to mutual aid communities!” This utopia for youth, or as this academic studio calls it youth-topia, sounds impossible, dangerous, and slightly perverse. Such a precinct would probably be chaotic and even resemble anarchy, but what if utopia looks like that for the youths? What if a place truly for youths is just like being in that life stage: confusing and strange? Can we accept that utopia? Or even if we don’t understand nor accept it, could we allow our youths to have ` space for themselves? While people-centred approaches to city-making such as participatory design and placemaking have come to the fore in recent years, this post-2020 world will demand more from citymakers. Beyond the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change, we are also facing a shifting social, political, and technological paradigm. Ideas such as labgrown meat, blockchain systems, and universal basic income have gone from fringe concepts to impending realities, and yet most of our cities across the world is still fundamentally capitalistic in nature and controlled by a few. Perhaps academic exercises like Youth-topia is where we can examine the recalibration of the power dynamics in our built environ-

ment. Perhaps this is where we can harness our optimism and creativity to make a utopia for youth more eu-topos than ou-topos. It may be nothing more than a mental or academic exercise today, but as Rutger Bregman writes, ”Every progressive milestone of civilization -- from the end of slavery to the beginning of democracy -- was once considered a utopian fantasy.”

Reference Bartolacci, James. Thomas More’s Utopia. British Library, www. bl.uk/learning/timeline/item126618.html. [Accessed 24 Jan. 2021]. Rogers, Kara. Rewind: Modernist Dreams Of Utopian Architecture.” Journal, 6 Nov. 2017, www. architizer.com/ blog/practice/details/modernist-utopian-architecture. Klein, Christopher. Biosphere 2 | Scientific Research Facility. Encyclopedia Britannica, www.britannica.com/topic/ Biosphere-2. [Accessed 24 Jan. 2021]. West, Lindy. When Biosphere 2 Became a Grand Experiment in Self-Isolation. HISTORY, 15 May 2020, www.history.com/ news/biosphere-2-spaceship-earth. Herland: The Forgotten Feminist Classic about a Civilisation without Men. The Guardian, 25 Nov. 2017, www.theguardian. com/lifeandstyle/2015/mar/30/herland-forgotten-feministclassic-about-civilisation-without-men. [Accessed 24 Jan. 2021]. Annex B, BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON SOMERSET BELT PROJECT. Ministry of Community, Culture, and Youth (Singapore), May. 2019, https://www.mccy.gov.sg/aboutus/news-and-resources/press-statements/2019/may/-/ media/07FDAA3F5A5044DEB4FD73ADA815ADD7.ashx. [Accessed 24 Jan. 2021]. Official website for Somerset Belt. Ministry of Community, Culture, and Youth (Singapore), https://youthactionplan.sg/ SomersetBelt/. [Accessed 24 Jan. 2021]. Bregman, Rutger. Utopia for Realists. Little, Brown, 2017.


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SOMERSET LIVING ROOM SIMON-KYLE ROCKNATHAN & TAY BOON KIAT

CANOPY VILLAGE BENJAMIN CHONG & KYAW HTET PAING


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“There’s NOWHERE to sit!”

SOMERSET LIVING ROOM TAY BOON KIAT & SIMON-KYLE ROCKNATHAN

The Somerset Living Room is a vibrant youth-centric public space project situated in the Youth Park site of MCCY’s Somerset Belt Masterplan. As a means of supplementing the plethora of programs surrounding the site, this project fills the gaping lack of public seating space in the area by creating a multitude of urban living rooms. Youth are invited to find a space of their own amongst a range of privacy levels, and meet their ‘neighbours’ with the cutouts designed to promote intermingling through a variety of activities. Modules with movable walls and plug-in furniture were designed to propagate the site and form unique, endlessly re-configurable ‘rooms’ to accommodate its users, creating ‘living rooms’ for anyone and everyone.


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Informal Seating

Public Seating

Café

The Problem This project arose from a simple problem; while the Somerset area has a plethora of activities, from shopping to laser-tag, it is lacking in public spaces for youth to do what they do best – hang-out.

Top: Mapping of hang-out spots in the vicinity

The mapping above shows the handful of public hang-out spots versus the cafes, which come in abundance. While the food has its own allure, youth have limited disposable income, and eating in town tends to be more costly, which is why neighbourhood centres are gaining popularity. We decided to exploit this gap in the market, and supplement the numerous existing programs in the area.


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To begin designing this ‘public living room’, we studied a collection of 40 living rooms; images we’d obtained from friends and family. These images show the unique spaces people feel free to be themselves in. We broke them down into layouts, and categorized the different postures and focal points the subjects took in the images, as a means of figuring out what makes a living room.

Top: Elements of a living room Left: A compilation of 40 living rooms

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Why the Living Room? It’s the perfect every-space. It is flexible in its activities, it can accommodate groups of people, as well as people on their own. It’s also a space you can be yourself, and you can mould to suit your needs.

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40 Living Rooms


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Top: 40 living room layouts Top Right: 40 living room postures


internal

internal

external

internal

internal

mix

mix

external

external

external

mix

external

mix

external

external

mix

mix

external

external

internal

external

mix

internal

external

mix

internal

external

internal

mix

external

external

external

internal

internal

external

external

external

internal

The layouts break down the living rooms into six basic components: the walls, the windows, the TV, the coffee table, the sofa, and loose furniture. The postures covered everything between lying down and standing up. Internal focal points refer to when the subjects’ attention was directed to the social group, while external would mean their attention was directed at a something outside of the people around them – usually the TV or their mobile phones.

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external

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external


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Top: Three categories of living room Bottom: Three categories combined

Modules In order to oblige the many unique layouts and postures, we decided to formulate a reconfigurable modular system. The living room layouts could be categorized by the number of walls they had. If ‘living rooms’ could be placed adjacent to each other, these three different categories are easily achieved. But what if one of the walls could move? This gave rise to a module which could switch between categories, and, when coupled with other modules and outfitted with loose furniture, can give infinite possibilities of unique living rooms!


CHILL - SOMERSET LIVING ROOM 183 Top: One module, three states Left: When coupled with more modules and loose furniture, endless possibilities!


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Will cut-outs blur the boundaries between adjacent spaces?

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A pitched roof is synonymous with home

What if they could foster interactions between spaces?

Cutouts and Activities

Board Games

Dining

Ping-pong

Bar

Further variation was pursued in the walls of the modules. Three different wall heights gave three different degrees of visual connection between adjacent ‘rooms’. Cutouts offered the opportunity for spontaneous interactions, and fun activities among groups of friends.

Top: Refining the wall modules Left: The different Active and Passive wall modules

Passive

Right: The variable modules make for many degrees of interaction between guests



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2. Shade Pixelation (1m)

4. Topography (Base)

5. Topography (Raised)

7. Proposed Circulation

8. Topography (Refined)

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1. Shade Analysis


Modules accounted for the internal focal points of the living room – interactions amongst group. Four food kiosks and a performance stage were added to the site as external attractors. Finally, the modules were clustered along the site, with denser clusters towards the more active, Grange Rd end, and sparser clusters facing the quieter Devonshire Rd. Together, they form an exciting, dynamic public living room. 6. Existing Circulation

9. External Attractors

10. Modules Parti Diagram

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3. Shade Pixelation (2m)

How the modules were placed in the Youth Park was first informed by the shading, as thermal comfort is another key aspect of good public seating. The shading was pixelated to the module dimensions, and turned into an articulated topography. A new proposed circulation, based off existing site circulation and a newly added scramble crossing, further refined the topography.

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Propagation on Site


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“It’s like a living room, but with your friends.”


Axonometric

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Crawl

CANOPY VILLAGE BENJAMIN CHONG & KYAW HTET PAING

Walk

Climb

Jump

Canopy Village re-imagines the notion of playgrounds, a space which is an intrinsic part of every child’s life, not for young children, but for young adults. As children grow up, they lose the need to move around using both hands and feet, crawling and climbing, as they start to rely on their legs to walk. Canopy Village aims to bring back the childlike experiences of exploring space in three dimensions. By traversing these outgrown but familiar play spaces, individuals are encouraged to remove themselves from a sense of time and place, and recall their childhood experiences, while creating new ones. Just as playgrounds are social nodes for children, Canopy Village hopes to be a flexible meeting point which invites youth to participate in creative exploration and shaping a community identity. The design incorporates rigid scaffolding frames, a commonly overlooked element of Singapore, with soft climbable netting, to create an undulating landscape inviting all to explore.

Top: Five basic actions Left: View from Devonshire Rd

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Body Movements


2.5m2.5m 2.5m2.5m 2.5m 2.5m 2.5m 2.5m2.5m

2.5m2.5m 2.5m 2.5m 2.5m 2.5m2.5m

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Modules Modules Combination Combination Modules Combination Modules Combination

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Modules ModulesCombination Combination Modules Combination Modules Canopy Village employs a modular design approach, utilising three unique net shapes within a fixed 2.5m x 2.5m x 2.5m scaffolding frame. These three net shapes, strung from the corners of the scaffolding, are then combined together in various sub-assemblies, each designed to encourage two out of five actions, sitting, crawling, walking, climbing and jumping. These sub-assemblies can then further interconnected to create a web of paths and spaces, allowing for many possible routes.

Top: Three basic net shapes Right: View from the bus stop Bottom: Different combinations of modules give rise to different actions

CrawlCrawl + Crawl Walk ++Walk Crawl Walk + Walk

Walk Walk +Walk Climb ++Climb Climb Walk + Climb

ClimbClimb + Climb Jump ++Jump Climb Jump + Jump

JumpJ

Crawl Crawl ++ Walk Walk Crawl + Walk

Walk Walk ++ Climb Climb Walk + Climb

Climb Climb ++ Jump Jump Climb + Jump

J Jump


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p+Crawl +Crawl Crawl

Crawl Crawl Crawl + +Sit +Sit Sit

Climb Climb Climb + +Sit +Sit Sit

Walk Walk Walk + +Sit +Sit Sit

p+Crawl + Crawl + Crawl Crawl

Crawl +Sit Sit Crawl Crawl Crawl+ ++Sit Sit

Climb +Sit Sit Climb Climb Climb+ ++Sit Sit

Walk +Sit Sit Walk Walk Walk+ ++Sit Sit


2. Circulation

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1. Existing Canopy

3. Nodes

In arranging the programmes, the design first identified the location of the existing trees and their canopy cover. These shaded spaces would be ideal for relaxing away from the hot sun. Next, access points into the site were located and existing circulation paths drawn, to understand key spaces and routes. Subsequently, a series of activity nodes were plotted in accordance to the canopy cover and circulation, with the large group activity (red) spaces towards the centre of the site, and the small group spaces (blue) towards the edges, under shade. Finally, these nodes were translated into usable programmes, with the large activity nodes focusing on a particular theme, from skating and public performances to recreation and food. These nodes are supported by ancillary spaces, such as flexible seating and viewing galleries. Lastly, a skat-able loop connects Somerset Skate Park with Canopy Village, encouraging youth to move throughout the Youth Park to play and rest. This systematic approach in laying out the programmes allows for Canopy Village to create vibrant and active social spaces, with a variety of activities and experiences.


SOMERSET ROAD

SUS TAIN ABL E SK ATE SHO P

Skate Loop Stop

SKATE SPACE

Breakout Space

ENTRANCE

BR IDG E

OFFS TAG E

Dance Silent Movie

Bands Performances

Live Music

YOUTH SQUARE

Temporary Exhibitions

Temporary Exhibitions

Drink

Rel ax

Go on a date

Socialise

bre ak Eat

FLEXI SEATS Picnic

Bar Socialise Cafe

Meet friends

Play

Hang

FOODIE SQUARE

Drink Study

Meet friends

Relax

Relive Childhood Climb

VIE WIN GG ALL Col lab ERY ora tive Gra ffit i

Repair Market

Picnic

CANOPY PLAYGROUND

Eat with friends

Tak ea Study

Family Markets

GRA FFIT I AL LEY

BU SS TO P

GR AN GE RO AD

Explore

Dance

Youth Competitions

Family Outings Meet Friends

RED BOX

YOUTH STAGE

Youth Artists’ Market

VIE WIN GG ALL ERY

CAR PARK

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VIE WI NG GA LLE RY

OV ERH EAD

INF O

Wayfinding

Photo Op

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Skate Lessons Skateboard Testing

Study

FLEXI SEATS

Drink

SKATE LOOP

DEVONSHIRE ROAD

Diagrammatic Plan


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Right: Grid-based aggregation of modular frames to for the dynamic play-space Far Right: A curated progression through the site


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Site Aggregation As mentioned earlier, Canopy Village uses modular frames and netting to encourage multiple forms of motion. Using the programmatic arrangement derived from the site context, the modular sub-assemblies are placed in clusters around the site. A general flow is established, linking adjacent clusters with progressively changing motions, from crawling, to walking, to climbing and jumping.

This overall flow allows for a curated progression throughout the site, without dictating any specific route for people to follow. These clustered spaces are then supported by resting spaces (various shades of blue), which do not have a define route, but instead encourage people to sit atop the structure and view Somerset from a different perspective.


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First Storey Plan

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Second Storey Plan

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Roof Plan

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Section AA

Skate Space

Active: Youth Square + Canopy

Quiet: Foodie Square + Canopy

Unique Spaces

Top/Bottom: Long/Short sections showing the unique spaces Canopy Village has to offer Left: The translucency of the netting creates a dynamic view from above

Section BB

Quiet: Foodie Square + Canopy

Canopy Playground

Canopy Village aims to provide a diverse range of spaces, both along the ground and into the air. Horizontally connected spaces, as shown in the sections, transition from active and noisy towards the north, to quieter and relaxed towards the south. This was done in consideration to the many residential developments along Devonshire Road, which are very near the site. The vertical connection around the site allows for a new plane of circulation, and encourages youth to find their own space among the canopy, to play, study or relax. The porous nature of the modular scaffolding and nets allow for people to distance themselves away from the crowd, while also allowing visual connectivity throughout the site.


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CHILL - CANOPY VILLAGE 203 Top: Day-time view of the Youth Square artists’ market Adjacent: Night-time view of the Youth Square silent bands performance Left: View from Foodie Square


CHILL - CANOPY VILLAGE 204

Top: Looking towards foodie square Top Right: Flexi-seating modules Right: Passers-by stop for a snack at the food stall


Flexi Seat Modules

Hammock (1-2 pax) Hammock Hammock (1-2 pax) (1-2 pax)

Bench (2Bench pax) (3Bench pax) (2 pax)

Table Table (1-4 pax) (1-4 pax) Table (1-4 pax)

205

Swing seat (1Swing pax) seat Swing seat (1 pax) (1 pax)

Another key element within Canopy Village is the combination of food and play spaces. The same scaffolding module used in the main structure is also found in the flexible seats, which are also made of the same net material. By hooking parts of the net onto the frame, a swing seat which can accommodate one person and transform into a hammock or a bench to seat more. These seats can also be connected with a table to for flexible dining spaces, for the office lunch crowd in the day, or for social gatherings with music under the night sky.

CHILL - CANOPY VILLAGE

Reconfigurable Seating


Construction Details for Anchoring Modules x84 x12

x32

CHILL - CANOPY VILLAGE

x48

x15

x16

206

x38

x57

x14

x4

Adjacent: Construction Details Right: View from the Bus-stop


Frame-net Connector Scaffolding Jack

2.4x0.3m Wooden Batten

2.5m Cuplock Vertical Standard

2.5m Transom

2.5m Ledger

Module A Netting

1.2m Wide Staircase

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2.8m Cuplock Vertical Standard

CHILL - CANOPY VILLAGE

1.2x0.3m Wooden Batten



Aerial View of Canopy Village


BIOGRAPHIES 210 BIOGRAPHIES

Studio Leads

Jackson Tan

Alex Sun

Jackson is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at SUTD since 2013 and established design firm SPORES_Studio in 2013 to explore the use of time-based design to construct new spatial experiences. Prior to this, Jackson practiced architecture with renown British firm Hopkins Architects for 7 years and has worked on multiple high profile international projects including RIBA award winning Nottingham Trent University; Cyprus Cultural Centre; MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai and St Thomas’ Hospital East Wing Cladding Project. Jackson received his DipArch from the Bartlett and is a registered architect with the UK Architects Registration Board.

Mr. Alex Sun is Executive Director of Investment Banking Department of China International Capital Corporation (CICC) overseeing the bank’s cross-border strategies for REITs origination and execution. Prior to joining CICC, Mr. Sun was the Director of Ascendas Asia Fund Management in CapitaLand Group where he was involved in evaluating real estate investments in Asia markets including China, India, Korea and Australia. Before joining CapitaLand, Alex was the Vice President and Director of Singapore at Vanke Group, where he led the acquisition and asset management functions for Pan‐Asia portfolios. Alex received Master of Real Estate and Master of Architecture at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He serves as a fellow in Business School of National University of Singapore, visiting lecturer in INSEAD and Adjunct Assistant Professor at SUTD. He is Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and certified Financial Risk Manager (FRM).


211 BIOGRAPHIES

Contributors

Austen Chan

Hoe Su Fern

Adib Jalal

Austen Chan is a Director at WASAA Architects & Associates and is part of the team responsible for the design and delivery of the National Parks Youth Space at Jurong Lake Gardens. He has always been interested in how architecture and the creation of spaces play a vital role in the development of human relationships. With a passion for public spaces, he continues to explore these relationships with each project.

Hoe Su Fern is an arts researcher, educator and advocate who traverses artistic disciplines and mediums. She is currently Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the Arts and Culture Management Programme at the Singapore Management University. She holds a PhD in Culture and Communication from The University of Melbourne, Australia. She has spoken, taught, researched and published on arts and cultural policy, urban cultural economies, placemaking and the conditions of artistic and cultural production. She has a wealth of experience in developing and/or coordinating local, regional and global projects in varying formats; all of which advocate for the value of the arts and culture in urban environments. Her practice is informed by her pursuit for practice-oriented and engaged arts research and her interest in enhancing research impact beyond academia, particularly through the power of the arts and culture to catalyse dialogue and bridge differences.

Adib Jalal is an urbanist on an exploration of making our cities lovable places for people to live in. He is the co-founder and Director of placemaking studio Shophouse & Co where he consults on strategies for community-centred urban developments, facilitates stakeholder engagements, and curates programmes to create a shared experience of the city. Trained in architecture, Adib has served as the Festival Director of Archifest, was a World Cities Summit Young Leader, and is recognised as a thought leader by the global network PlacemakingX. He is also often involved in various community initiatives in his home country of Singapore.


SUTD ASD


ASD is part of the young Singapore University of Technology and Design [SUTD]. which was established in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology [MIT]. The university opened its doors to the first students in May 2012. At ASD, we were given the rare opportunity to create a new school of architecture completely from scratch, unencumbered by legacy. Our challenge: How to design a brand new school of architecture as a tabula rasa? What should be its intellectual footprint as part of this larger new university, SUTD? According to Professor Thomas Magnanti, SUTD’s founding president, SUTD was created with the mission “to advocate knowledge and nurture technicallygrounded leaders and innovators to serve societal needs, with a focus on Design, through an integrated multidisciplinary curriculum and multi-disciplinary research.” The multidisciplinary dimension of the university is deeply embedded in its structure. With no traditional departments, the curriculum is organised around four initial pillars with fluid boundaries. Architecture and Sustainable Design [ASD] is one of the four pillars, next to Engineering Product Design [EPD], Engineering Systems and Design [ESD], and Information Systems and Technology Design [ISTD]. ASD thus derives its identity from its particular multidisciplinary context within SUTD, the university’s emphasis on technology and design leadership, and its specific geo-political location in Singapore. PILLAR OVERVIEW Architecture is currently undergoing fundamental changes as it transitions into the digital era. The constraints on resources necessitate a radical rethinking of the traditional skills and trade-based production of the built

environment. Advances in digital design and fabrication, together with digital mass-customisation techniques, are simultaneously providing resource-efficient opportunities to the designer and lowering production costs Environmental changes are demanding a more ecological approach to the design of architecture and cities; digital data harvested from local sensor networks, satellites, and crowd-sourced information will feed the simulation of environmental forces and conditions for the sustainable design of future buildings and cities as appropriate ecological respo111ses The urbanisation of the world in the coming decades will add three billion people to urban populations, an amount equal to all city dwellers today. This process of rapid urbanization, especially in Asia, calls for sustainable architectural and urban solutions at an unprecedented speed and scale, demanding the use of digital tools in architectural and urban design. The Architecture and Sustainable Design [ASD] pillar focuses on this changing reality, and prepares students for the immediate present and future needs of architecture in a digital era, through an innovative curriculum. The ASD pedagogy is characterised by a hands-on approach to architecture and sustainable design, a holistic understanding of the ways in which technology is changing our design and building processes, and an inclusive approach to the cultural and historical aspects of designing buildings and cities.



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