Westbury’s Pick: The Ting Xi Bamboo Pavilion
The stunning Ting Xi Bamboo Pavilion is nestled within a leafy suburban forest close to the centre of Xiamen – a quaint coastal city in China.
The building is constructed from 14 bamboo columns supporting a gabled roof which spans across the edge of the eaves on either side, enabling natural light to penetrate into the building. As the columns rise up to the roof, the bamboo naturally fans outward in multiple directions to shape a void inside the space that appears as though it has been intricately carved out. The architects – Vo Trong Nghia (VTN) from Vietnam explained that “the gently curved interior form creates an experience of layered frame structures, amplifying the perceived depth of the space”.
VTN Architects is an award-winning practice, renowned for its experimental approach to contemporary design using light, wind, and water along with locally sourced materials to create green projects, whilst maintaining an essence of Asian expression. For these reasons, bamboo is VTN’s signature building material, chosen for its supreme structural strength and extreme lightweight as well as its rapid growing ability and CO2 absorbability.
The practice’s eco-friendly work with bamboo is helping to drive its popularity as a renewable material after many Asian architects and developers have long dismissed it as being too flimsy. VTN has carefully treated the pavilion in a traditional natural Vietnamese method to ensure long-term durability for around 30 to 50 years, contributing to their sustainable design approach and principles.
While many of VTN’s bamboo projects have typically been left open to the elements, plans for the Ting Xi Bamboo Pavilion specified for its space to be air-conditioned. This presented challenges in that a unique solution needed to be developed to ensure the inherently permeable bamboo structure remained airtight, leading to an installation of arch-shaped glass panels between the columns and walls to mirror the curving of the structural bamboo. Partition walls composed of bamboo layers, rubber sheets, and a thatch finishing were placed within the columns to make them airtight as well.
Inside, the building functions as a 200-seat restaurant and a café lounge as well as offering a flexible space to host local events. Behind this public area stands a triangular shaped brick building comprising function rooms such as the restrooms, kitchen, staff room and storage space. This second pavilion has been set beneath the eaves of the main bamboo structure to allow the main pavilion to take centre stage.
The Ting Xi Bamboo Pavilion is a striking example of eco-friendly architecture that serves to champion the natural beauty and strength of bamboo as a building material while also providing a functional hub and point of interest to its community. This ethos is very much in line with our own values and principles of building and design, and that’s the reason we have chosen it as our latest Westbury Pick.
Images via: http://votrongnghia.com