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[10 Years of Design Competitions, 30 Public Architecture Selections] Cloud

UIA + Q&Partners Architects

written by
Wee Jinbok, Hong Sukkyu
photographed by
Shin Jaeik
materials provided by
UIA, Q&Partners Architects
edited by
Youn Yaelim, Kim Jia, Park Jiyoun, Ryu Jin
background

SPACE November 2023 (No. 672) 

 

10 years have passed since the design competition system was overhauled as a consequence of the Act On The Promotion Of Building Service Industry. As multiple adjustments and corrections have been made over time to the operation of design competitions, the system has given birth to numerous selections that populate our surroundings today. If these winning designs, which were born out of the creative struggles of individual designers in their respective times and places under the aegis of ‘good public architecture’, were to be assembled in a single space, what would stand out? SPACE have selected 30 distinguished examples of public architecture that have been recognised by the architectural scene over the past 10 years. We compared images of the winning designs and their results, and interviewed the architects. Our selection criteria was primarily based on being honoured with selection, but we also wanted to offer as diverse an outlook as possible according to type and year of competition, ordering institution, and use or function, to offer a wide spectrum of examples. When it came to public residences, we decided not to feature them in this article as they are a unique breed in terms of scale and programme. By reviewing all stages, from planning, examination, selection, and the post-construction phases, and after hearing from those responsible for them about the obstacles that they faced on their journey towards good public architecture, we hope that the testimonies of these people who witnessed the various aspects of the design competition system will give us a sense of continued direction as to where we should be heading in the next 10 years. 

 

Q1: From the design competition to construction, what was the main task when it came to the completion of your project? In which areas do you think your project did well, and what made this possible?


Q2: What suggestions would you make to improve the way design competitions are conducted in Korea?


©UIA + Q&Partners Architects 

 

©Shin Jaeik 

 

A1: The original Sinheung Market alley, which was covered by a slate roof placed on a two-floor slab, was a dark and suffocating space. Cloud was well-received for raising the arcade roof to the building’s roof level to resolve issues with daylight intake and ventilation, for adding an air curtain composite made of two pieces of Ethylene Terra Flur Ethylene (ETFE) to lighten the structure, and for minimising the occupation of the narrow market street. Our structural approach, resembling a crane tiptoeing on its feet, was recognised as a solution to realistic constraints and difficulties.

After selection, the problems that would be difficult to anticipate and various demands from local renters and storeowners were discussed with the architects, construction contractors, and relevant officials from the Seoul Metropolitan Government to try to resolve and amend them. The size of the structural materials had to be reduced without changing the original structure overall, and structural and foundation design had to be carefully considered even though it was impossible to find out about the situation under the street. All of this had to be done while maintaining a good relationship between renters and storeowners. We collaborated with various professionals to find solutions regarding the structure and construction, and the project which was originally planned for completion two years from design to construction was completed in five years.

 

A2: The jury has the final say regarding who wins the competition, and yet in most design competitions the jury focuses only on the architectural planning aspects such as planning and zoning. We need to include judges who can also evaluate designs that are engineering-based, such as Cloud.

 

2017 invited design competition

Architect  

UIA (Wee Jinbok) + Q&Partners Architects (Hong Sukkyu)

Location  

95-9, Shinheung-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul

Programme  

temporary facility

Gross floor area  

888.9m²

Design cost  

budget – 78 million KRW / actual cost – 78 million KRW

Construction cost  

budget – 1.509 billion KRW / actual cost – 1.509 billion KRW

Competition year  

Nov. 2017

Completion year  

May 2022

Client  

Seoul Metropolitan Government

Prize  

Korean Institute of Architects Awards (2022)

You can see more information on the SPACE No. November (2023).

Architect

UIA (Wee Jinbok) + Q&Partners Architects (Hong Suk

Location

95-9, Shinheung-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul

Programme

temporary facility

Gross floor area

888.9m²

Cost

budget – 1.509 billion KRW / actual cost 

Client

Seoul Metropolitan Government

Completion year

May 2022

Design cost

budget – 78 million KRW / actual cost –

Competition year

Nov. 2017


Wee Jinbok
Hong Sukkyu

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