In an Achingly Beautiful Part of China: a Warped Viewing Platform Designed by Students
Hong Kong architects John Lin and Olivier Ottevaere have partnered with their students at the University of Hong Kong and completed The Warp, a swelling wooden overlook that echoes the surrounding mountains in Ludian town, Yunnan, China.
This is the third project, after The Pinch and The Sweep, that the architects have built with their first year architecture students as part of greater post-earthquake redevelopment of the Yunnan province, which was hit both in 2014 and 2012 in a series of earthquakes. Last year’s 6.1 quake killed at least 617 people, injured 2,400, and damaged more than 30,000 homes. Each project uses low-cost timber materials, and aims to make the most use of a single structure by offering several community services in one—they combine community meeting areas, points of commerce, interaction, viewing, eating, reading, and even play areas for families.
With steep slopes that viewers can climb for sweeping valley views, The Warp also houses a roadside market on its steps, and a covered rest area for eating beneath it. The region is ethnically diverse, with a majority of the population Muslim, and the project was conceived as a meeting point and lookout for the main entry road.
The Pinch, in Shuanghe Village, combines a community center and library, while The Sweep, in Tuanjie Village, is another curved viewing platform with a playground.
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