SANAA, together with Taiwanese studio Ricky Liu & Associates Architects + Planners, have won a competition to design the Taichung City Cultural Center. The competition, which was announced last May, asked participants to design a complex that would not only include a new public library and fine arts museum, but would form a dramatic entryway to the the city’s Gateway Park.
Located at the north end of the park, SANAA’s concept centers on interlocking white transparent volumes without rigid walls. The firm opted instead to use semitransparent fluid mesh curtains to spatially define and lighten the building and allow for more flexibility. The transparent curtains conceal elevated walkways, connecting to viewing platforms that look onto the complex and the city at large.
A cavernous central atrium will provide a welcome point and meeting zone. The center will also house permanent exhibition spaces, administration offices, exhibition space for special collections, multimedia resources, and quiet reading zones, rooftop terraces and education facilities. Other teams on the competition shortlist were Eisenman Architects, Swiss firm Stucheli Architecten, Korean firm MASS STUDIES, and French architect Jean-Loup Baldacci.