Removal Renovation of Chen Huacheng Memorial
To turn an old serving facility in Linjiang park into a new Memorial Hall for CHEN Huacheng, a national Hero, is not only about adapting the exhibition program, but also about reorganizing the general spatial atmosphere. Thus, an open veranda with concrete and timber structure is applied to enclose the main building, with space merging with the surrounding landscape, creating a proper solemn atmosphere for remembrance.
Controlling the design power and desire with an emphasis of architectural application instead of creation
Among a series of ordinary renovation programs completed by Atelier Archmixing in recent years, Chen Huancheng Memorial in Baoshan District, Shanghai, is representative. The memorial hall was originally located in a magnificent Confucian Temple in Riverside Park. When the Confucian Temple would be revived, CHEN Huacheng’s memorial was planned to be re-accommodated in an adjacent commercial building of zigzag plan with surface renewal. No matter how creative the façade renovation would be, it’s impossible to fill the giant gap between these two structures according to spatial sequence and building scale. Therefore, Atelier Archmixing persuaded the client to change this façade renovation program into that of a spatial reorganization. By rebuilding the visiting route as well as the atmosphere, the design aims at achieving an appropriate sense of remembrance, and also creating a positive everyday public space integrating with the surrounding landscape.
Unusual ordinary galleries: adopting spatial design strategy to create pleasant public space with a proper atmosphere of commemoration
Familiarity and Quietness are two features the designer wants to embody this commemorating structure. Open gallery, a frequently used and relatively material saving building typology was employed. Four sloping roof linear galleries with different length and width enclosed the existed building, forming a continuous gallery space, constituting courtyards of various sizes and shapes with the zigzag boundaries.
In this way, on one hand, it effectively enlarged and regulated the space and volume of the old building, maximally extending the visiting route, consequently gifting this humble structure with formal and decent appearance, rhythmic spatial order and a proper serious atmosphere. On the other hand, by remaining the original blank walls, which is necessary for interior exhibition, the galleries resulted in an open boundaries integrating with the surrounding environment. People can walk through or stay in the veranda and courtyard spaces without entering the exhibition hall. This memorial hall becomes an open public space instead of an enclosed patriotism educational venue.
Not simple traditional materials and structures: applying ordinary material and tectonic accurately to fulfill a sense of both everydayness and seriousness
In order to avoid visual shock to everyday users in this park, the design applied not only traditional building form and tectonic but also common materials and modest treatment. The exterior walls and concrete columns were covered with plain cement, the timber columns, beams, rafters were all painted dark, and those modern and accurately connected detail of timer and steel structure were oiled into black. Because Atelier Archmixing holds the position that, for those renovation of ordinary buildings in everyday context, controlling the design power and desire with an emphasis of architectural application instead of creation are valuable attitudes and approaches with the new potential to explore intrinsic strength of everyday life.