Jan '06 - Feb '06
The five-day urban workshop has come to a close, and the symposium (fancy name for crit/discussion session!) quite aptly wrapped up our weeklong efforts.
Mr Acebillo, the workshop conductor (masterplanner of the city of Barcelona, which won the RIBA gold medal several years ago - yes, the city won the award), gave a rousing speech on the potential that Asian cities have. European cities, in contrast, are much too concerned with historical preservation, that urban planning has become more an archaeological act.
I personally feel that his ideals were highly respectable, but that in his lectures and seminars, tended to skirt issues on politics, bureaucracy and red tape, which abound in Asian cities. Well, I guess ultimately, it's about controlling what's beyond our sphere of influence, as future architects/planners.
It was a pretty fruitful workshop (particularly its closure), which made the couple of sleep-deprived nights seem all the more worth it. Working with twelve people on a group project is not something I'd like to experience very often, but we did come up with a pretty good scheme eventually.
The masterplan model by our studio (Richard Ho studio). The model took one night (eleven pairs of hands make light work..) As in the first semester, the concerned area was the Duxton Plain / York Hill area, which turned out to be a bit of a bore at first...
...but since this masterplan incorporated other elements other than a park (housing, commercial and mixed use developments), there was a lot more free play with building typologies eventually, which made it more fulfilling. (The map took me an entire night to draw and colour in!)
The model from atop.
One of the models from another studio...
... and another.
The symposium at the level 4 studios.
Prof Acebillo (standing) critiquing a scheme