On May 13, 2008, Bouwkunde, the faculty of architecture building at Delft University, was unexpectedly consumed by a devastating fire. Before the incident, the building had created a social and education environment where ideas and criticism were shared freely. The faculty saw this terrible loss as a positive opportunity to take a fresh and critical look at the education of the future. Thus, an open international ideas competition was organized in 2009 for the design of a new building. California-based architect Sid Wichienkuer‘s proposal for the new building aims to restore the creative atmosphere Bouwkunde offered its users.
More images and further project description after the break.
“The rebuilding of the architecture school is an outward expression of the philosophy of the school stating that architecture will be relevant, will be involved with other academic communities in solving problems, and will seek a new sense of civic leadership,” Wichienkuer remarks.
The project seeks to understand how section can foster productive architectural relationships. By using topographies as a driving force, the building is organzied around a central quad. As the building rises, the communal interior core grows so that each floor is centered around a gathering space. Due to the stacking of these communal spaces, the other programmatic elements such as offices, studios, and libraries, radiate outward to create a dense envelope that surrounds the users.
The ground level is extremely porous as to attract passerbyers to the space. A large auditorium can be configured to accommodate multiple size as a gesture toward bringing all into the dialogue of the building. The horizontal stepped pieces are spaced in such a way that allows students to climb up the building or use the space as outdoor seating.