In 2007 we were appointed following a competition to design a new ‘Innovation Tower’ for Hong Kong Polytechnic University – a beacon structure symbolizing and driving the development of Hong Kong as a design hub in Asia; a fitting setting for the institution’s many different design education and design research programs.
We welcome the chance to re-examine the characteristics of, and demands placed upon, a ‘creative multidisciplinary environment’ – envisaging a solution that dissolved the classic typography of tower and podium to create a seamlessly fluid new structure. A tower that establishes a vision for future achievements and references the University’s rich tradition.
Conceptually, the university’s many different programs and the inter-relationships between them provided a guiding principle – ‘collateral flexibility’ – which was used to govern the tower’s internal logic; to create a building which is inherently organized and understood to visitors from the point of entry.
Surrounding playing fields have been raised to create a new surrounding landscape and place the main pedestrian entrance at podium level, with the space liberated below used to create access routes to the main campus. At podium level an open public foyer, the end point of a long path running from Suen Chi Sun Memorial Square channels deep in the main structure, bringing visitors to a generous space containing shops, cafeteria, museum and exhibition area.