In 2009, Douglas Tong Hsu, chairman of the Board of Trustees at Yuan Ze University, commissioned Santiago Calatrava to design a significant new building complex for the University campus, located in Taoyuan County, approximately 40 kilometers southwest of Taipei, Taiwan. The 58,000 gross square meter Phase 1 of the ambitious program includes a Performing Arts Center, a memorial to the University's founder, and a new building for the University's art and design programs. An additional 50,000 gross square meters of space for future scientific research laboratories is anticipated in Phase 2 of the project.
Situated adjacent to the main campus entrance, the three new buildings will serve as a gateway to the University and create a generous cultural contribution to education and the arts in the region. At the center of the composition, the Performing Arts Building is defined by a dramatic curving roof that evokes traditional Taiwanese architecture. The primary entry to the building is from the north under a cantilevered extension of the roof. The building's public lobbies surround two major performance spaces; an Orchestra Hall to the north and a Theater to the south. The Orchestra Hall, which can accommodate 1150 patrons, a full orchestra, and chorus, is highlighted by a breathtaking operable ceiling that expands or contracts the volume of the hall to meet the acoustic requirements of any performance. Large glazed openings provide a visual connection to the lobbies, plaza and campus beyond.
The Theater is defined by a dramatic trumpet-shaped ceiling culminating in an illuminated ovoid. It features a flexible seating configuration that can accommodate from 400 to 700 people and allows multiple types of performances, from "black box" shows to traditional productions requiring a fly tower. Choral and symphony rehearsal space is located above the Theater, and a large reception hall is located above the Orchestra Hall. Located to the west of the Performing Arts Building, the Y. Z. Hsu Memorial building is a strong yet understated memorial to Yu-Ziang Hsu, the University's founder. The roof, defined by a series of curving steel ribs ascending to a peak, sits atop a concrete base clad in stone. The entry sequence begins at a traditional three portal arch within a circular plaza north of the Memorial. A long walkway set between two raised reflecting pools completes the contemplative approach. Inside the building, a conical sky lit vestibule serves as an antechamber to the Memorial space, and includes a spiral stair that connects to exhibition and support spaces below. The steel ribs that form the Memorial roof split to create a dramatic arched interior"
No. 135, Yuandong Road
桃園縣 Taiwan 320