AZL architects: three courtyards community center, jiangsu province, china

image © iwan baan

 

 

a rapidly developing area along the yangtze river called for a community center for recreation, dining and meeting spaces for the residents and

employees of the burgeoning city of yangzhou. the structure used streamlined form and a rich architectonic palette to balance the likes of the

2500 year old beijing-hangzhou grand canal nearby and the  sleek glass office blocks that so characterize early urbanity. zhang lei of chinese

firm AZL architects used the cluster of three buildings to assert a statement about the potential for architecture to unify a shifting landscape.

forty-five degree angle pitched roofs visually halt a pattern of locally produced red brick staggered in such a way that the both skin and s

tructure are rendered dynamic, complex planes. 

 

 

while the roof profile references the local village dwelling typology, the terra-cotta bricks anchor the building into the site in a new way.

two masonry patterns are employed to varying effects– one where every second brick juts out in a three-dimensional herringbone pattern;

the other a lattice-like interlaced regular pattern that allowed for cross-ventilation. the three courtyard blocks are organized around the

conceptual themes of bamboo, stone and water while aggregating in such a way as to reference the closeness of a village community.

open walkways and wooden lattice work provide both airiness and privacy, bolstered by the double entrance court in each building.

interiors are a balanced spatial composition of small rooms, common in chinese chinese restaurants, and large public spaces for

events and meetings. 

 

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

locally produced tera cotta bricks are employed in both structure and skin

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

materials and rooflines reference the agrarian village, but the streamlined forms hint at a contemporary development 

image © iwan baan

  

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

the cluster of buildings in the green agricultural landscape 

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

architectural form abstracts vernacular built space 

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

the pitched roof geometry visually halts the brick skin 

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

the brick is configured in myriad ways to articulate the space, here is a herringbone pathway and lattice-like walls 

image © iwan baan

 

   

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

wooden trellises allow walkways to be both private and airy 

image © iwan baan

 

 

AZL architects: three courtyards community center, china

the wooden screens are another abstracted reference to chinese gardens 

image © iwan baan

 

 

 

 

project info: 

 

 

location: yangzhou, jiangsu province, chinaarchitects: zhang lei / azl architectsproject team: zhang lei, shen kaikang, yang hefengcollaborator: yangzhou city planning & design instituteproject area: 1900 sqm