ARCHITECTURE

Flocking Arches

The Flocking Arches is pavilion made up of several smaller ''boats'', which flock together and form a vast connected public shelter.

The West Kowloon Cultural District was a reclaimed land which used to be a typhoon shelter since the 1920s. Fishermen in Hong Kong used to live on boats. They did everything aboard, from birth to death, and develop their own culture. During typhoon, small fishermen boats from different parts of the ocean clustered together at typhoon shelter, seeking stability against the rough weather and ocean waves.

Boats were then connected, forming a big and steady public deck. In this common realm people shared foods, goods, experiences, and connected with each another. After the typhoon was gone, these boats departed and went on fishing for their own.

In a conventional pavilion people mingle beneath one single big roof. Inspired by the rich seashore history of the site, we propose that the pavilion can be made up of several smaller ''boats'', which flock together and form a vast connected public shelter. These small arched structures are made of light weight steel, cladded with fiberglass membrane roofs, recycled timber planks, and are distinguishable by plants of different species. The small structures can hold individual workshops, or serve as cosy spaces of romance. Yet these tiny structures are closely connected, visually and physically, for big events to be hosted.

The translucent pavilion blends into greenery, and becomes a transient place between the nursery park and waterfront promenade. Lectures, talks, workshops, performances will take place between the arches, while the visitors can participate at different altitudes and perspective. It breaks away from a conventional one-directional performance, encouraging more spontaneous shows and dialogues.

While the trees at the nursery park will grow and be delivered to different parts of the cultural district, we propose that after the life-span of the pavilion, the small floating arch structures will be disassembled, distributed to different parts of the district and become urban furniture. They will be utilised as sheltered benches, temporary stages, and food stalls in the park. The separated structures will seek their own afterlives.

While the trees at the nursery park will grow and be delivered to different parts of the cultural district, we propose that after the life-span of the pavilion, the small floating arch structures will be disassembled, distributed to different parts of the district and become urban furniture. They will be utilised as sheltered benches, temporary stages, and food stalls in the park. The separated structures will seek their own afterlives.