workbook/ international competitions/ 2001/ May 


  • This project continues the man/nature dichotomy of the existing situation, i.e., thoughtful building and bucolic landscape.
  • It seeks to bring a level of humanity to an endeavour which many would consider primarily scientific.
  • The rational laboratory building expresses both its time and process and accepts that it is a modern artifact.
  • In addition it sets out to say something about nature and man's relationship to it.
  • The laboratories are in direct contrast to the existing buildings as their purpose and cultural and temporal contexts are substantially different.
  • The building is raised above the ground plane so that the built form and the natural form can engage in thoughtful discourse.
  • The laboratories act as a datum against which the character and topography of the site are revealed.
  • As well as the landscape flowing under the building it also flows within the building.
  • The reflective offices give on to an oasis or continuous winter garden and their function as counterpoint to the more intense activity of the laboratories.
  • The parking and some support facilities are below grade.
  • Elevating the building allows the bucolic landscape to continue under the building while accommodating publicly oriented spaces.
  • The substantial mechanical space occurs on an extended second level.
  • The laboratories are placed above the mechanical space so that views, spatial diversity and natural lighting can come into play.
  • Materials are thoughtfully employed to explore three basic conditions, i.e., the transparent, the translucent and the opaque.
  • The planting of wild flowers, the use of several follies and the extension of a sensitive conceptual landscape architect could lead to provocative proposals for the landscape.


     Prof. Arch. Frank C. Carter; Arch. Ovidio Sbrissa 

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