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Changzhi Planning Exhibition Hall
Location: Changzhi, Shanxi, China
Client: City of Changzhi
Principals in Charge: R. el-Khoury and R. Levit
Team: Lindsay Hochman, Mike Fung, Renee Leung, Nariman Mousavi, Zachariah Glennon, Clarissa Nam
The Planning Exhibition Hall is a new urban institution with a particular spatial constitution and purpose. While most are based on familiar building precedents, such as museums or convention halls, we believe that the unique dedications of this institutions demand formal and typological invention: an ocular device or camera transformed into a building. We place the large-scale city model on a plinth that seamlessly extends the public realm into the building by sloping up from the street. In the Great Model Hall, the large model is enmeshed the context: it occupies the same space and has the same orientation as the surrounding cityscape. Not only does this spatial continuity enhance the public exposure and accessibility of the principal exhibit, it also enables visitors to better orient and situate the model within their familiar surroundings. The ceiling of the Great Model Hall is an inverted dome that swoops down to offer the best view of the model from the observation mezzanine above. The hanging roof features a computer-controlled array of high intensity LED. A live video feed of the sky at a scale and position matching the model below is on permanent display. The Exhibitions Gallery, a bowl-shaped space on the second level accommodates a variety of exhibits surrounding an Observation Ring that is suspended from the glazed Atrium. The Observation Ring offers the greatest reward of the building: a spectacular bird’s-eye views of the model below.