Mecanoo unveils vision for innovative social housing project in Taiwan
Public participation informs design for communal Kaohsiung complex
Tenderstream member Mecanoo has revealed the vision for an innovative social housing project in Kaohsiung, marking a significant milestone as the city's inaugural venture into communal living solutions. The development addresses the pressing need for affordable housing, while placing an emphasis on the role of collective spaces in enhancing the quality of life for its citizens. The complex will host 245 units for a large variety of users, from young couples to families with children, as well as students and the elderly.
Located between the new green corridor and the existing neighbourhood alongside a railway, the housing complex will kick-off a larger urban redevelopment with mixed-use buildings for the whole area. The triangular plot defines the shape of the two buildings connected by a green canopy around the courtyard, serving as an entrance for the residents. Commercial spaces on the perimeter of the ground floor generate street life and activate the public spaces around the building. The east building houses most of the apartments, while the west tower concentrates on the mixed-use programme, with social facilities and apartments. The sky park is a social hub open to the public, bringing residents and the local community together.
A playful grid of vertical elements and windows creates various rhythms on the facade. The depth between the structure and the exterior walls provides shadow and reduces the solar heat gain inside the apartments. As a contrast to most housing blocks in Taiwan, where facade materials are used to cover walls, columns and slabs, Mecanoo’s choice for this social housing is to create a contrast between structure and walls: green and white coloured ceramic tiles are used to infill the structural grid covered in stucco. The coloured tiles, a typical material largely used in Taiwanese architecture, come together in a composition to pattern the development’s visual identity.
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