헤더위크 스튜디오가 디자인하고 CPG 컨설턴트 사의 수석 건축가가 주도한 난양 기술 대학(NTU 싱가포르)의 러닝허브는 싱가포르의 새로운 교육적 랜드마크가 되었다. NTU 캠퍼스의 재개발 계획의 일환으로 러닝 허브는 3만3천명에 이르는 학생들을 위한 새로운 다중 이용 시설로써 설계되었다.
상 자같은 모양의 강의실을 연결하는 수마일에 달하는 복도들과 교육을 위한 건물로써의 전통적 포맷을 대신해 대학은 학습의 근대적인 방식에 더 적합할만한 독창적인 디자인을 추구했다. 학습이 거의 모든 장소에서 이루어질 수 있도록 디지탈 혁신을 꾀하면서도 이 새로운 대학 건물이 가져야할 가장 중요한 기능은 학생들과 교수들이 다양한 훈육의 방법을 서로에게 부합하고 상호 작용할 수 있도록 하는 데 두었다.
결과 교수와 학생 간 캐주얼하면서도 부수적인 상호 작용에 더 도움이 될 수 있는 역동적 환경을 창조해 내기 위한 사교적이면서도
학습적인 공간들이 엮여진 구조를 만들어냈다. 12개의 타워는 각각 둥근 모양의 교실로 가득 채워져 있으며, 56개의 교실을
제공하기 위해 공용의 중앙 아트리움를 아래쪽을 향해 점차 줄어드는 형태로 구성하였다. 이러한 신세대적인 스마트 교실들은 NTU가
생각해낸 것으로 상호 소통적인 소그룹 교육과 액티브한 학습이 이루어질 수 있도록 하기 위함이다. 유연한 포맷의 교실들은 교수들로
하여금 자신의 학생들이 수업에 더 잘 참여할 수 있도록 구성할 수 있으며, 학생들은 보다 쉽게 서로 협력할 수 있다. 또한 아트리움 주변으로 공유된 순환 공간들을 향해 구성되어 있는 교실들은 비형식적인 정원 테라스와 오픈 스페이스로 연결되어 있다.
헤 더위크 스튜디오의 창립자이자 교장인 토마스 헤더위크는 "헤더위크 스튜디오가 만든 아시아 내 첫번째로 주요한 이번 새 건물들은 기존의 전통적 대학 건물들을 재고해 볼 수 있는 독창적인 기회를 우리에게 제공했습니다. 정보화 시대에서 캠퍼스 공간이 지닌 가장 중요한 상품이란 서로 서로 만나고 부딪히고 배울 수 있는 사회적 공간이라는 것입니다. 그러한 점에서 러닝허브는 손으로 만든 콩크리트 타워의 조합이면서도 모든 사람을 한 데 얽히게 할 수 있는 중심 공간으로 둘러싸여져 있습니다. 우리는 이러한 상향 사고와 도전적인 학습 공간을 독창적인 프로젝트라는 이름아래 작업할 수 있는 기회를 얻게 되어 영광일 뿐입니다."라고 말하고 있다.
reviewed by ZH,오사
The Learning Hub at Nanyang Technological University (NTU Singapore), designed by Heatherwick Studio and executed by lead architect CPG Consultants, is a new educational landmark for Singapore. As part of NTU’s redevelopment plan for the campus, the Learning Hub is designed to be a new multi-use building for its 33,000 students.
Environmental Performance: Green Mark Platinum
Design Consultant: Heatherwick Studio; Project Lead – Ole Smith
Lead Architect: CPG Consultants; Project Lead – Vivien Leong
Main Contractor: Newcon Builders
Sustainabilty Consultants: CPG Consultants
Mechanical & Electrical Engineers: Bescon Consulting Engineers
Civil & Structural Engineers: TYLin International
Instead of the traditional format of an educational building with miles of corridors linking box-like lecture rooms, the university asked for a unique design better suited to contemporary ways of learning. With the digital revolution allowing learning to take place almost anywhere, the most important function of this new university building was to be a place where students and professors from various disciplines could meet and interact with one other. The Learning Hub is envisioned to be a place where students might meet their future business partner or someone they would have an amazing idea with.
The outcome is a structure that interweaves both social and learning spaces to create a dynamic environment more conducive to casual and incidental interaction between students and professors. Twelve towers, each a stack of rounded tutorial rooms, taper inwards at their base around a generous public central atrium to provide fifty-six tutorial rooms without corners or obvious fronts or backs. The new-generation smart classrooms were conceived by NTU to support its new learning pedagogies that promote more interactive small group teaching and active learning. The flexible format of the rooms allows professors to configure them to better engage their students, and for students to more easily collaborate with each other.
The rooms in turn open onto the shared circulation space around the atrium, interspersed with open spaces and informal garden terraces, allowing students to be visually connected while also leaving space to linger, gather and pause. NTU Professor Kam Chan Hin, Senior Associate Provost (Undergraduate Education) says, “The new Learning Hub provides an exciting mix of learning, community and recreational spaces for NTU students, professors and researchers from various disciplines to gather and interact. By bringing people and their ideas together, NTU can spark future innovations and new knowledge that increasingly happen at the intersection of disciplines.”
Founder and Principal Thomas Heatherwick, Heatherwick Studio says, “Heatherwick Studio’s first major new building in Asia has offered us an extraordinary opportunity to rethink the traditional university building. In the information age the most important commodity on a campus is social space to meet and bump into and learn from each other. The Learning Hub is a collection of handmade concrete towers surrounding a central space that brings everyone together, interspersed with nooks, balconies and gardens for informal collaborative learning. We are honoured to have had the chance to work with this forward-thinking and ambitious academic institution to realise such an unusual project.”
Project lead Vivien Leong of CPG Consultants, the Lead Architect and Sustainability Consultants for the Learning Hub, says, “The most exciting aspect of this project is to see such an inspired design develop into a uniquely contextual and functional building through a highly collaborative process. Managing this project was no mean feat as we had… …to ensure that our work complied with Singapore’s rigorous building regulations and that it achieved the highest standards of sustainability, while working hard to retain the integrity of the original design and vision of NTU . The opportunity to challenge convention by introducing several first-of-its-kind environmentally friendly features and innovative solutions that embody the spirit of modern day learning has been a truly rewarding experience for us.” The combination of local building codes and high environmental aspirations meant that a concrete construction was necessary. The primary design challenge was how to make this humble material feel beautiful.
As a result, the concrete stair and elevator cores have been embedded with 700 specially commissioned drawings, three-dimensionally cast into the concrete, referencing everything from science to art and literature. Overlapping images, specially commissioned from illustrator Sara Fanelli, are deliberately ambiguous thought triggers, designed to leave space for the imagination. The sixty one angled concrete columns have a distinctive undulating texture developed specially for the project. The curved facade panels are cast with a unique horizontal pattern, made with ten cost-efficient adjustable silicone moulds, to create a complex three-dimensional texture. The result of the building’s various raw treatments of concrete is that the whole project appears to have been handmade from wet clay.
With year-round temperatures in Singapore between 25°C and 31°C it was important to maintain the students’ comfort whilst achieving a sustainable energy usage.
The building’s open and permeable atrium is naturally ventilated, maximising air circulation around the towers of tutorial rooms and allowing students to feel as cool as possible. Each room is cooled using silent convection, which does away with the need for energy-heavy air conditioning fans. The Learning Hub building was awarded Green Mark Platinum status by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA), Singapore, the highest possible environmental standard for a building of this type.
In a digital age when many students have multiple communication devices and ready access to knowledge, the Learning Hub reasserts the role of an educational building in the 21st century. No longer a place for traditional classroom teaching to passive students, NTU’s new icon provides space for collaborative learning in a technology-rich setting. Opened till late, it will be a place for students to gather, where knowledge is shared, collaboration between disciplines takes place and where future leaders are nurtured.