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soya silo self storage a suburban urbanity a machine for swimming a floating library professional work samples

curriculum vitae 4 12 24 30 38


Jing Liao 2019

Hello, I ’m Jing, a four th-year architec ture s tudent. What interes ts me about design is its abilit y to fur ther the human experience - fur ther by clarif ying the connec tions bet ween ourselves, our thoughts, our things, and our surroundings.


+1 226 606 6282





University of Waterloo, School of Architecture Candidate for Bachelor of Architectural Studies Cambridge, Ontario, Canada 2015 – 2020

Ontario Association of Architects Third Year Prize University of Waterloo, School of Architecture 2019 Ontario Association of Architects Second Year Prize University of Waterloo, School of Architecture 2018 First in Class Engineering Scholarship University of Waterloo 2017 – 2018


Outstanding Design Award - 1B, 2B, 3A, 3B Design Studios University of Waterloo 2016 – 2019

Diller Scofidio + Renfro Architecture Intern New York, United States 01. 2019 – 08. 2019

Exhibition of Exemplary Student Work Riverside Gallery 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019

Burton Hamfelt Urban Architecture Architecture Intern Amsterdam, The Netherlands 05. 2018 – 08. 2018


WXY Architecture + Urban Design Architecture Intern New York, United States 07. 2017 – 12. 2017

Drafting AutoCAD 3D Modeling Rhinoceros, Revit Rendering V-Ray Visualization Photoshop, Illustrator Animation After Effects, Premiere Layout InDesign

plusClover Architecture Intern Hong Kong 01. 2017 – 04. 2017


soya silo self storage

Can storage become an engaging architectural program? Thriving off of rampant materialism and life events such as divorce, death, dislocation, and downsizing, the typology of the North American self-storage facility is understood through of lens of consumerist cynicism. It finds its habitat off major infrastructural works on cheap and undesirable land, housing our stored items out of sight and mind. Examining the city of Toronto, the Victory Soya Mills Silos serve as a manifestation of this very condition. Left as a remnant from the city’s industrial port era, the building is now derelict and soon to be at the intersection of the Keating Channel Precinct - a new urban neighbourhood planned to transform the lake shore. However, what the master plan fails to specify is how this structure can contribute value to the new district. This adaptive reuse project strives to imagine a possible reality where a prosaic and subservient space such as storage is rethought as an environment for a new type of public activity. By hybridizing and compacting storage space with other unconventional programs or features such as automation, a marketplace, a museum, production workshops, artist residences, and a shipping and fulfillment center, the act of storing becomes a collaborative, creative endeavour rather than an isolated chore. The remixing, re-framing, repairing, re-exchanging of stored items frees them from stasis to be re-appreciated. We ourselves can be allowed to adopt roles beyond consumer to include curators, craftsmen, and creators.

Featured in 2019 Projects Review Exhibition 3B Design Studio coordinated by Andrew Levitt Toronto, Canada


View From Gardiner Expressway

Level 0

Speculated Future Site Axo

Section B – B




Level 1

Level 2

Section A – A


storage pod sizes

rotational ASRS configuration


Automated Storage & Retrieval Stacks

Drone Aviary


Museum Cafe

Shipping & Fulfillment

Exhibition Space

Public Classroom

Exhibition Space

Artists in Residence

Repair & Disassembly Laboratories User Curated Show Space

Vertical Production Line

Public Workshops

Market and Auction Floor Staff Offices


Loading Bays


View from Lawn


Market Interior

Exhibition Space Interior


a suburban urbanity

What if we were to capitalize on the in-between, proximities, and energies of spaces? This project attempts to imagine the intersection of the domestic, public, and production realms not as moments of dysfunction but as opportunities to endorse alternative social and energetic relationships only possible from the programmatic vicissitudes. One of the main spatial manifestations of this idea is by treating the circulation as an exploded core. By providing many means of access and routes, spontaneous interactions can take place between different user groups, enhancing the sense of a non-isolated urbanism. This idea of explosion is present in three types of “social streets� within the project. A loop formed out of the interstitial space mediating between the factory and livework units becomes a social terrace where the community may gather, play basketball, garden, or simply find a place to break and eat lunch. The service lane doubles as outdoor seating spillover space and is activated as a lively food scene in the evenings by small kitchen incubators that front to the space. The single loaded corridor exteriorized from the residential slab apartments provides climatic tempering and enables a system of vertically connected filtration gardens that purify collected rainwater for use in the textile factory below. As a symbiotic response, the waste heat from the factory is collected using an air to water heat exchanger and delivered to offices and homes above as radiant heat energy.

Featured in 2018 Projects Review Exhibition 3A Design Studio coordinated by Adrian Blackwell Toronto, Canada


I – Existing Site Analysis to York University


towards Humber College

future LRT station existing figure ground

Arch 392: Extensive and Intensive Urbanism Hannah Carmichael, Jacob Drung, Ethan Duffey, & Jing Liao


*Site & Master Plan Phase in Collaboration with H. Carmichael J. Drung, and E. Duffey

towards Downtown Toronto (17 stops)

In the Greater Toronto Area, older residential districts have been economically and infrastructurally fragmented from the gentrifying urban core and the sprawling peripheries, creating islands of isolation in the city fabric. With the advent of both the Yonge-University subway extension and Finch West LRT, the area surrounding Finch and Keele is primed to become a significant transportation nexus in the future. How can the existing suburban area densify into the quasi urban node it is primed to become?


3 utility light industry commercial / office residential institutional



Zoning Mosaic like zoning fragments the site into divisions


Streets & Blocks Too few vehicular-oriented streets slice site into large blocks unsuitable for pedestrians


Lots Improperly large lots equal little incentive for developments to build to street fronts


Built Form Large buildings of homogeneous use result from divisive zoning, too large blocks, and too large lots


layered site analysis


II – Precedent Analysis Lessons from Diverse Urban Fabrics & City Blocks Elsewhere in the World

Flagpole shaped lots in Japan emerged from sale of subdivided lots due to high inheritance tax in the 1980s. Each lot was regulated to have at minimum 2m frontage to the street. This structure increases urban density by building in the mid block. New York has a general block size of 60 x 100 meters. Lot sizes are long and narrow with building frontages of 8 meters. Building typology is determined by adjacent roadways. Larger lots and buildings are along avenues while more an array of smaller storefronts face more intimate streets. A typical Munich block consists of a solid, mid-rise perimeter facing the street which buffers smaller structures which were in-filled in the interior courtyard over time. The internal spaces are accessible via tunnels in the outer shell.




Nakano City FAR 2.8

Greenwich Village FAR 4.8

Near Technische Universität München FAR 3.4








130m 150m

30m 105 m 8m


*Site & Master Plan Phase in Collaboration with H. Carmichael J. Drung, and E. Duffey

III – Proposed Masterplan

new figure ground

This master plan calls for turning the divisive, fragmented zoning into a gradient - to superimpose residential and commercial program on top of the existing employment zone. This is in order to arrive at a compact scheme that mitigates the displacement of industry typical of new urban developments. The question left unanswered is then how to deal with the multitude of programmatic collisions this gesture implies? 4



Zoning Gradient zoning allows light industry to be preserved on site with residential commercial are superimposed


Streets & Blocks Diverse street types carve out smaller blocks with unique edge conditions


Lots Lot sizes are to be determined by frontage onto streets: large lots front larger streets and vice versa. The mid-block is to be in-filled with ‘flagpole’ lots.




Built Form Each block is to have 3 typological forms of building minimum. This physical mix creates a diverse neighborhood by accommodating social, economic, and programmatic mix.

layered site operations


IV – Building Details









e av





or flo n e e op offic

design development site

y da


re two story apartments (opt. live-work space below)




ile xt tor y fac

incubator kitchens

small retail / business / workspace


residential commercial (retail / office)

siz id


a et

b il /

in us



co-working space & cafe

light industry

program breakdown


IV – Building Details

ground level


tower level

terrace level


IV – Building Details

social “streets”


tower unit threshold

winding interstitial loop

service lane after hours


IV – Building Details

detailed section


east - west section


a machine for swimming

ming use


ure should be a ng is a collision mplex that strives pe works to filter hytoremediation. n from view, but t landscape can blic as they are ater quality. The l levels. Visitors nd can circulate sport. The third nects the ground rtical circulation chines powering ew.

ob ser v e



eng a g e


What if infrastructure was a more visible and celebrated aspect of our lives? A Machine for Swimming is a collision of three distinct elements which together become a public pool complex to celebrate infrastructure. On the ground, a productive, terraced landscape works to filter and purify lake and storm water for the natural pool through phytoremediation. Traditionally, filtration is spatially condensed to be hidden from view, but the expanse of this soft system will argue for a new attitude - that landscape can be used as a visual way of disseminating information to the public as visitors are encouraged to explore and witness changes in water quality descending from the elevated walkway. A large machine tower acts also as the primary lobby and vertical circulation into the pool complex, bringing swimmers he a v y m e t al re m ov a l down a winding tour around pumping and storage tanks. The floating donut form houses research labs and public amenity captures views of sport and laboratory research in its inner courtyard, activities only possible through the heroism of natural and mechanical machines. Stratiotes aloides “water soldiers”

Hydrocharis morsus-ranae “european frogbit”

Featured in 2018 Projects Review Exhibition 2B Design Studio coordinated by Lola Sheppard Ontario Place, Toronto, Canada


Sparganium eurycarpum “bur reed”

Lemnoideae “duck weed”

nu tri e nt re m oval

Typha “cat tails”

Eichhornia crassipes “water hyacinth”

s t a b iliza t io n


site plan

view into courtyard



first floor plan

ground floor plan


section through machine tower

Stratiotes aloides “water soldiers”

Hydrocharis morsus-ranae “european frogbit”

heavy metal removal



Sparganium eurycarpum “bur reed”

Lemnoideae “duck weed”

nutrient removal

Typha “cat tails”

Eichh cras “water h


hornia ssipes hyacinth�


section through diving pool

pondmussel habitat & fine filter



diving/sport pool

public pool

lake ontario

clean section through productive landscape and pools


a floating library

What happens when a library is lifted? This vision of a new library for the Toronto neighborhood of Parkdale is governed primarily by two concepts seeking to improve upon typical typologies of public buildings and to create a more engaging building section. The first operates on how the building interfaces with its site, physically lifting the library up to open the ground plane for public activity. The second deals with the creation of more exciting relationships between different levels in the interior by using shifted floor plates and volumes of program.

Featured in 2016 Projects Review Exhibition 1B Design Studio coordinated by Lola Sheppard Parkdale, Toronto, Canada

East Elevation

typical typologies of public space...

-space inefficient


...a new typology


+accessible +space efficient

typical building section...

-same ceiling heights

...a new building section

expand / compress

sever platforms

-no cross relationships

+different ceiling heights +cross views & relationships




Adult Education


ESL Office


Language Stacks


Children’s Library


Youth Tutoring


Seminar Rooms


Quiet Study


Book Stacks


Computer Lab

1 Information



Multi Media


Flexible Public Space


section looking south


section looking east


professional work samples

Diller S cofidio + Renfro

During my 8 month internship at Diller Scofidio + Renfro, I assisted with competition, SD, and DD submission packages for a plethora of institutional or cultural buildings using AutoCAD, Rhinoceros, Revit, and Adobe Suite. Projects I was privileged to be involved with were the Centre for Cities, Cultures, and Civilizations for the University of Toronto, The Victoria and Albert Museum, and London Centre for Music. I was also regularly tasked with producing physical models for international competitions, supervising the production individually or collaborating with a tight knit team. Projects of this nature include the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Centre in Kiev and the new La Brea Tar Pits Museum in Los Angeles.


Left: Various physical model photos of proposed design for the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Centre Competition. This model insert measuring 400 x 400 x 200 mm was fabricated and produced solely by myself using 3D print, laser cutting, museum board, acrylic, and spray paint techniques. Right: La Brea Tar Pits and Museum Model for competition phase measuring approximately 1200 x 600 mm was completed in 1 week by team of 4. Below: Exterior view of 90 Queens Park, The Centre for Cultures, Civilizations, and Cities for the University of Toronto. Final image for press release by bloomimages.


Bur ton Hamfelt Urban Architec ture

During my 4 month internship at Burton Hamfelt Urban Architecture in 2018, I worked closely with the project lead on a design study for a new residential development in Rivium as well as a winning competition submission for a new international school in the Bijlmermeer. For both projects, I was primarily responsible for creating, developing, and supervising the 3D modeling work in Rhinoceros. The models served as a critical tool from which major design decisions emerged and both working and presentation diagrams and renders were generated for client meetings and final competition submissions.

Right: Exterior and Interior visualizations for Amsterdam International School (Bijlmer, Amsterdam) Opposite: Axonometric of potential residential development, design study for DeMeeuw. (Rivium, Rotterdam)



WXY Architec ture Urban Design Planning

During my 4 month internship with WXY studio in 2017, I worked closely with the project leads on feasibility project for La Marqueta, which studies how the historic market and food district that occupies the underside of the Park Avenue viaduct in East Harlem may be revitalized. A special task I was given was that of generating a graphic language for publicly circulated marketing materials. This eventually manifested as hand sketched perspective visualizations as well as digital axonometric diagrammatic illustrations. The illustration sought to capture the spirit of the project vision. The most difficult aspect I encountered was calibrating the level of abstraction while showcasing key ideas. I experimented with graphic techniques and independently streamlined my work flow in Rhino and Adobe Illustrator to accommodate revisions and deliver two fully colored illustrations.

Top: Fragment axonometric graphic for marketing brochure prepared for EDC Bottom: Early prototype hand sketched perspective of view towards food hall



th yo a n u k ! Phone

+1 226 606 6282


Profile for Jing Liao

2019 Selected Works - University of Waterloo Architecture  

Jing Liao Portfolio 2019

2019 Selected Works - University of Waterloo Architecture  

Jing Liao Portfolio 2019

Profile for jingliao0