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ZIWEI DENG Architecture & Design Portfolio 2015-2017 Selected Works

ZIWEI DENG Illinois Institute of Technology Bachelor of Architecture

PROLOGUE The world is full of elements that relate with each other. Architecture, as an agent, should be able to deal with these relations. The origin of architecture derives from the primitive hut protecting primitive man from severe weather. Throughout the evolution of human civilization, architecture, as house for human to inhabit in different environment; as castle to protect landlord from enemy; as community center to get people to know each other; should be always playing the role to reveal, balance and conciliate those relations.


01 EXPANDING THE EDGE River Side Cultural Center


Rethink about Parking Lot and Park

03 AUTONOMY OF CHILDREN School of Montessori education

04 FLOWING LIGHT Gallery of Light

05 Cabin in Woods

3D-Print Bionics Buildings

06 Section of Imagination

Collage Section of Megastructure

07 Iron Chapel

Chapel Made by Carbon Fiber

01 EXPANDING THE EDGE IIT 5th year studio, 2017 fall Instructor: Martin Felsen Site: Downtown, Chicago Teammate: Yechi Zhang Chicago River is one of the most important property to the city, however, instead of embracing the treasure most of buildings just turn their back to the river. Nowadays people of Chicago begin to realize the river is a precious public resource. The Chicago river walk is a good example of how should we deal with the river. This project, located on the confluence point of Chicago river, is trying to talk about how to deal with the edge between the city and water.

01.The site is located at the confluence point of Chicago river. The relation between water and city is important. The concept is to expand the edge of river and make it a more active public space. A corridor alone the edge is generated to connect the three river banks as well as the water and city.

City Program Map Office buildings, recreational buildings and residential buildings in Chicago do not mix with each other well, which means people need to go to different places to fulfil their various needs.

Bike Lane Water Taxi CTA

Concept Program Diagram The idea is to compress the daily city life into a single building. Image on the left list the possible programs and the diagram on the right shows the juxtaposition of those programs and the water.

02.The context is very dynamic and complex with various type of building, physical condition and traffic flow. The design should accommodate itself to different condition of three river banks.

03.Applying the program diagram to the corridor, then it comes out with a building that various programs are connected by a ring circulation system.

Surface Overlap

Gtound Attachment

Circulation Control

Edge Correlation

Surface Fluctuation

Vertical Correlation

Corridor Differentia

Parallel Transformation

Horizontal Correlation

Generation Process


Community Center & Crossing Bridge

Residential Building & Gallery Retail Ramp

Circulation Bridge & Water Taxi Stop

Residential Building & Matket

Roof Park & Library

North Entrance & Water Taxi Stop

Residential Building & Work Shop Propeller enable the island to move around edges

Gymnasium & Crossing Bridge

Two islands could create a bridge for pedestrian when water traffic is not busy

North part of the building is mostly hanging on second floor level. The building divides into two branches and one of them descend as entrance and water taxi stop.

The floor and ceiling of the building fluctuate vertically and horizontally to create various space which fulfill different kinds of programs and adapt to different context.

South part of the building brings people from street to water (18 feet height difference). A zigzag ramp spiral down gently takes people to the river with retail alone side.

When the water traffic is not busy, two moving islands create a temporary bridge connect west and north river banks Providing a shortcut of two parts of the building and city.

The design tries to dissolve the hard edges between river and street and creates a smooth transition leading people from one to another. It is more like an infrastructure or landscape rather than a building.

02 SYMBIOTIC PARKING IIT 4th year studio, 2016 fall Instructor: Andrew Tinucci Site: Downtown, Chicago Teammate: Jordan Widjaja Parking lot and park, sharing the similar names, have distinct difference of space quality. Under the context of high density this project talks about the possibility of combining parking lot and park into a new typology of architecture.

PARK, Recreation, Keeping Cattle In the past, “PARK” as a private enclosed piece of ground with green, attached to a castle, and used for recreation and for keeping cattle.

PARK, Public Space “PARK” as noun refer to a public open space with plants

PARK, Stopping Vehicle “PARK” as verb means stopping and leaving a vehicle

Park & Roof Garden

Combination of PARK By the combination of these two meanings back together the project try to create a new typology as a place for parking vehicle and public recreation.

Pedestrain Flow & Ground Floor Commercial

Building adjacent to the site like the modern version of castle with a private roof garden at the top of their parking lot, which only accessible to those private residents.

By having the “park & parking” building, the design open the roof garden to the public as a park. As a return of opening residents’ roof we provide more amenities, resulting a winwin result to residents and the public.

Traffic Flow & Parking Lot



1 01. The existing site is a surface parking lot with a roof park adjacent to it

02. A mass is created as the shortterm parking structure accessed by ramp






Ground Floor


03. Amenity blocks are inserted to the parking mass

04. A ramp for people from street spirals up to roof park, connecting all the amenities






6 8

9 Fifth Floor

05. Elevator shafts for vehicle and people also work as main structure

06. The long-term parking located on top accessed by the elevators

10 Pedestrain Green Belt / 11 Basketball Court / 12 Rooftop Park / 13 Suken Reading Plaza / 14 Tennis Court / 15 Swimming Pool

Second Floor

1 Vehicle Entrance / 2 Long-term Parking Buffer Zone / 3 Cafe / 4 Restaurant / 5 Pedestrain Greenbelt Entrance 6 Short-term Parking Space / 7 Book Shop / 8 Conservatory / 9 Pedestrain Greenbelt

Parking Core

Park Envelope

The park envelope, taking the advantage of light and fresh air, wraps the building. The parking lot is divided into two parts (short-term parking and longterm parking). The short-term parking (2-4th floor), which can be accessed by ramps, works as self-park. The long-term parking (6-8th floor) is a valet parking. Customers leave and pick up their car in basement buffer-zone and staff convey the cars to spots by elevator. Massing Model

Circulation Model

Structure Model

Space Model

Final Model

Short Section

The design proposes to open the private roof garden to the public by the connection to the park envelope. As a return to the residents of the adjacent building, the parking building provides new amenities like gym, basketball court, conservatory, book shop and cafe. For security concern, the roof park could transfer to private garden after 9 pm.

Long Section

03 AUTONOMY OF CHILDREN IIT 3th year studio, 2016 spring Instructor: Richard E. Nelson Site: Chinatown, Chicago Individual Work

School buildings and exam-oriented educational system are usually designed based on the perspective of adult so that teachers could better manage students. Montessori education, different from traditional one, is a child-centered educational approach. It is a view of the child as one who is naturally eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning in a supportive, thoughtfully prepared learning environment. This project, based on research of Montessori education, takes a step further trying to create the school with autonomy of children.



TRADITIONAL SCHOOL Every year old in a classroom so that childern have to follow the curriculum

MONTESSORI SCHOOL Every three years old in a classroom so that childern can choose the suitable difficulty for them to learn




TYPICAL MONTESSORI CLASSROOM Space is divided into smaller zone by furniture for different kinds of activities

All age group learn in a same classroom so that childern have even larger range of choice of study


WHAT IF ? Space heightness indicates difficulty of courses and students make choices base on their condition

In traditional school, students are divided to different grades by age. The level of difficulty of study increases as the grade increases. However, each individual has different cognitive and intelligence level which means some might find what they learn is too difficult meanwhile others think it is too easy. Montessori education is fundamentally a model of human development. The education indicates that children have an innate path of psychological development. Children who are at liberty to choose and act freely within an environment prepared according


to the model would act spontaneously for optimal development. Montessori school use mixed age classroom (3-6,6-9,912 years-old classroom) so that student could have their own choice to certain range of difficulty. In this project, I try to push this idea further that mix children from 3 to 12 in a classroom. Each classroom is combined by several cubes on different levers, which indicates various difficulty of learning. Students in it have their own autonomy to choose which level is most suitable one for themselves.

BASIC CLASSROOM CUBE STRUCTURE Simple steel frame structure with different level of transparency of wall

SINGLE CLASSROOM CUBE LAYOUT Each cube corresponds to one activity zone in typical Montessori classroom

0cm Height Difference With 0cm height difference, two classroom cube could juxtapose as lecture space or interlap to form two spaces with various privacy

60cm Height Difference With 60cm height difference, the space is naturally divided into two parts. 60cm is the height of backrest of bench for kids.

30cm Height Difference

75cm Height Difference With 75cm height difference, the space is naturally divided into two parts. 75cm is the height of table for kids.

With 30cm height difference, the space is naturally divided into two parts. 30cm could be the seat for kids.

45cm Height Difference With 45cm height difference, the space is naturally divided into two parts. 45cm space between two floors could be the closet.

90cm Height Difference With 90cm height difference, the space is naturally divided into two parts. 90cm height difference could be slide for kids.

CLASSROOM CLUSTER Each classroom cluster is combined by 10 basic classroom cubes in different height and position. The diagram shows one possible combination in which there is a slide in the middle. Ground Floor Plan

Section cut through the courtyard of the school showing the layout that classroom clusters are allocated at periphery, corridor in middle and outdoor courtyard in center with lecture space under it.

Classroom Prespective Render

04 FLOWING LIGHT IIT 4th year studio, 2017 spring Instructor: Vladimir Radutny Site: Goose Island, Chicago Teammate: Zheng Yin, Ye Su Light and shadow are always the theme of architecture design. The project is a gallery of light and shadow in which all the other art is just supporting actors. We hope visitors could experience the subtle change of the space by sensing the light and touching the shadow.

Direct Light from Above

Single Reflection of Light

Double Reflection of Light with Flat Surface

Double Reflection of Light with Curve Surface

The double curve combination of the roof make it possible to introduce different conditions of light (direct and indirect)

Roof Methodology The project started with investigation of pure light and space. These set of study models show how light is introduced inside from the skylight by different methods. Each row of models are in similar condition but various parameter. To capture subtle change of light is what we are looking for in this project.

After basic investigation of light and space, the project focus on using surfaces with various curvature to introduce light to interior space. By casting cement slabs, different roof condition are simulated. Each row of models show same combination of roof slab with different light angle.

Existing Site and Orientation

Ramp System

Wall System

Roof System

The site is located on the other side of goose island beside the Chicago river. There are 25 feet height difference between water and bank. In order to accommodate the gallery to the context three systems are introduced: the ramp, the wall and the roof. The ramp starts from south-east corner, leading visitors to descend from the street level. After entering the gallery, the zigzag ramp takes visitors go through the building and slowly to the water. The wall system works as the main structure as well as screen blocking redundant light from entering the gallery. With the same orientation as the ramp, the wall

system is dense near landings which works as individual exhibition room and sparse on the middle of ramps creating rich space changes. The roof system, which introduce light to interior, is the most essential element of the gallery. Those apertures are perpendicular to the ramps so that visitors leading by zigzag ramps would pass through the same aperture multiple times with various distance to ceiling which make them feels differently every time going through those apertures. The light between exhibition rooms indicate a transition from one chapter to the other.

The gaps on walls make it possible for visitors to have a glance of space. Content in next section attracts them go on moving. The roofs sometimes blend down to ground so that visitors could touch them and feel the projected light on it. And because the building is buried in the ground, the roof become a walkable surface for people.

The project aims to design a gallery that provide a place for people in city to escape from their mundane life. It is a place to sense the light and tough the shadow, a place to meditate. It is a journey of sensation. The building filters out chaotic “noise� and leave a pure and simple space so that subtle change of feeling become distinct to visitors.

Exodus or the Voluntary Prisoners of Architecture, Rem Koolhaas

Walking City, Archigram

05 Cabin in Woods

06 Section of Imagination

IIT Advanced Modeling, 2016 fall Instructor: Alphonso Peluso Individual Work

IIT 5th year studio, 2017 fall Instructor: Martin Felsen Teammate: Yechi Zhang

Biological tissue has very unique and fascinating shape that inspire so many artists and designers. From PC games to industrial design we can see various biomimetic shape. And I try to design a series of buildings in forest with biomimetic shape so as to harmonize the buildings and the surrounding environment.

We speculated on what could have been. To look back at megastructure projects of the past and interrogate them for what they might have been. Through a process of collage and montage, we speculated on how the introduction of difference might have changed these projects.

07 Iron Chapel IIT Digital Fabrication, 2017 spring Instructor: Alphonso Peluso Team of ten people The concepts focused on dramatizing light through the movement into the chapel. The chapel is a linear structure made of overlapping modules of two different angles. These structures create columns and then connect at the top to create its triangular profile. The overlap creates apertures that allow light into the structure, apart from which there is an aperture in the center of the space to allow light in. The carbon fiber allowed us to explore form in a different technique rather than the typical additive, subtractive gestures. It also allowed us to work with a singular material throughout the design for structure, form and transparencies. The weight and fabrication process made it manageable, and the material used was easily controlled and efficiently managed. The Final structure has a life of its own, because of its behavior with light and wind.

The Iron Chapel in front of Crown Hall

ZIWEI DENG Education 08.2013-05.2018

Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) Chicago, USA Bachelor of Architecture, GPA: 3.6/4.0 (degree expected May, 2018)


Chongqing University Chongqing, China Major in Computer Science, GPA:3.23/4.0 (Ranking: TOP 15%)

Experience 06.2016-08.2016

the Institute of Historical Environment Conservation and Regeneration, SCUT (Guangzhou, China) Position: Architecture Intern Site Survey & Measurement, Digital Model Making, Diagram Making


the Young Planning Professionals Workshop (Guangzhou, China)


Architectural Design and Research Institute of SCUT (Guangzhou, China) Position: Architecture Intern Digital Model Making, Photo Retouching


Sichuang Reconstruction Headquarter (Sichuang, China Position: Volunteer of Reconstruction Design Architecture Site Raw Data Collection

Honor 2013-2018

IIT international student scholarship


4 studio projects and 2 other works selected to IIT open house


Dean’s list for 6 semesters



Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, Premiere, SketchUp, Rhino, Grasshopper, V-ray rendering, Auto CAD, QGIS,

Mandarin Cantonese English

Ziwei Deng portfolio 2017  
Ziwei Deng portfolio 2017