S space: a sustainable architecture in the service of the community

Hello dear readers, I am so happy to be back with the weekly article. As you know I have been manly uploading articles for "The Talk", which is amazing because I was able to talk about subjects requested by you. Nevertheless, it feels good to write about wonderful architecture projects from all over the world.

As you may already know, I am a huge fan of sustainable designs and initiatives. I always feel shaken to my core when I hear that a new architectural project focus on ecology and rely on a evenly sharing between human print and our environment. Which is why I felt the need to share this project with you guys.

S Space (S = Save the Stone & Scaffolding) is a project from the Vietnamese Architectural studio H&P Architects. Located in a new emerging urban area in Dong Van town, the project is an open space for the community, with its focus on cultural and artistic aspects on a daily basis (coffee space for daily activity).

The design inspiration comes from the beauty of the national landscape of Kem Trong where illegal rock mining is gradually turning this famous place into ruins. From this perspective, the design concept was to make use of waste (reusing scaffolding steel pipes, collecting rock debris from Kem Trong, discarded rocks from trade villages and construction sites) to express the treasure and nostalgia of local people.

The idea of the design was to echo the gap created by Day River between the rocky mountains

High stone walls which stand alone reminds of "The mountains" zigzagging intermittently and connecting randomly to one another through doors and openings to enable users' approach from various directions.

The building is surrounded by water and green trees alternated in various positions with different elevations in order to regulate microclimate, this design process creates scenery and blurs the outer-inner boundaries, which brings people closer to nature.

The roof as been designed as a "Big cloud" constituted of lightweight materials and mezzanine floors created by the continuous transfer of steel pipes (previously used as construction scaffolding) and bamboo sticks (roofing, flooring).

All of which make a light-looking but solid structure, in contrast to the thickness and tortuousness of the rock cave beneath. On top of the see-through roofing are sprinkler & mist sprayer to wash the roof and keep cool on hot summer days.

"Clouds and Mountains" present wild and dreamlike images but at the same time evoke strange feelings when experiencing it from within knowing that the town is gradually being swallow by heavy polluted air and metal structures.

Not quite far from a large polluted industrial park which gathers a high construction density, the message S Space conveys is: "Architecture bears responsibility for the natural and social-cultural environment". The project helps raise an alert at unplanned exploitation of natural resources in Vietnam today, which have wiped out many rocks with historical and cultural values, resulting in a serious imbalance between the natural ecosystem and the human one. While relying on ecological building materials and building techniques, as an example of what should be the primarily goal when it comes to building our communities.

In my opinion, this projects is an amazing reminder of the fundamental of architecture. Architecture should be a way of building and connecting communities around the essence of life while proving enough comfort without alternating the environment.

That's all guys, I hope you enjoyed this article. I also want to remind you that even tho it was about sustainability in architecture, keeping our earth clean and our ecological systems balance is a global work and it's start with the smallest step.

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remastered by Marie-Pierre Mavioga