Pandemic of generic buildings have no connection to each other. — Architectural Review
The pandemic of generic buildings that have no connection to each other, let alone to the climate and culture of their location. The Architectural Review named it NOTOPIA. Its symptom is that the edge of Mumbai will look like the beginning of Shenzhen, and the center of Singapore will look like downtown Dallas. Notopia is where a city loses its identity. It results in deserted streets.
The city is like a playground, where architects, government, investors do architecture business on each site. They build buildings but those buildings are separated and not related to each other, even to the city. However, the changing of a city is a gradual process. The development of buildings cannot be isolated from the large context. The buildings are just containers of human activities. Separated buildings result in un-related activities. Therefore this project aims to create a system which can make existing and new buildings on Prince’s Dock connected. That means the activities in different building blocks will have relationships. As part of the city, finally, the connection between community residents and the city will be established
The site is located on Liverpool waterfront where there has a brilliant maritime history. However, the Princes Dock is receiving the erosion of NOTOPIA. There are full of generic buildings with luxury residential and offices but lack of pedestrian. Most people came here only for working. It is a great location but lack vitality.
Social Media - The Hashtag Title
As we are in a post-digital age, social media like Instagram plays a significant role in our daily life. In this project, architect (me) is the first designer, users are the second designers. They give the value of spaces by making stories in the space. Therefore, in my hypothesis, the residents post their personal stories on social media with a hashtag #IMadeLiverpool to attract others. That’s also where the title came from.
Chapter One: Urban Scale
Combinatory Urbanism as a Response to Notopia
The edge of Mumbai will look like the beginning of Shenzhen, and the center of Singapore will look like downtown Dallas. The pandemic of generic buildings has resulted in lack of identities in most of the cities around the world. It has become a global trend.
Inspired by Thom Mayne’s combinatory urbanism theory, I used it as a major concept in response to Notopia in order to blur the boundary between urban design, architecture, and landscape and establish relationships of human activities in different areas. I have also created a manifesto of anti-notopia which acts as a series of guiding principles for the design.
Masterplan of Prince’s Dock
The proposal is a running way where partly elevated and partly on the ground and a series of building blocks. The programs of these blocks are a core community center, a heritage wall gallery, and several elevated sports halls. Positions of these blocks are based on the dimension requirements of internal activities and the visibility of existing buildings. They only occupy the space in-between existing.
Chapter Two: Architectural Scale
Prince’s Dock’s Living Room
The grid joint of heritage landing stage is simplified to act as a basic component for generating spaces. The grid space can be used on different scales. In large scale, it creates flexible and even spaces; in medium scale, it can be architectural elements such as railing; in small scale, it can be used to create furniture and transparent partial walls.
A Multi-Funtional Complex
Reveal of intersected solids and internal activities. The annular extensions on the left side is a part of upper-level stage platform and the inclined cuboid on the right side is the cinema. The upper outside surface of the cinema is library seating steps where visitors can read books.
This section shows the relationships between stage, cinema, library, making studios, exhibition space and other common spaces. It also shows the entering experience which starts from the left side entrance, across the reception and narrow escalator and reaches the common space at the third floor.
Transverse Section Of The Stage
Relationships between canal landing stage, running way, reception, stage, and landscape
Transverse Section Of The Cinema
Relationships between canal landing stage, gym and roof terrace on the left side as well as cinema, library reading area steps and ground landscape on the right side
A variety of sports and leisure activities
#IMadeLiverpool Social Media Feed
University of Liverpool
Year 3 Semester 2
Liverpool, United Kingdom