“To work on architecture for culture and health is a social commitment during these challenging times,” states Steven Holl. His proposal for a new Cultural and Health Center in Shanghai has just received approval. Comprising two buildings set in a public landscape, the project is intended to bring a cluster of new housing blocks together.
Inspired by Karl Popper’s 1965 lecture on the evolutionary model of free will entitled, “Of Clouds and Clocks,” the landscape design is “organized in large clock-like circles forming a central public space, the buildings are cloud-like in their porosity and openness inviting the public in.”
The Cultural Center will be constructed in white concrete and set on a base of transparent glass, containing a cafe and recreation rooms. A curved ramp provides look-outs. The adjacent Health Center, also made of white concrete, is intended to fit into the curving landscape. This structure will house a health and education center, a pharmacy, examination rooms, and a nurse area. Both buildings will have green sedum roofs.
See the gallery below for more images, plans and sections.