Nature is coming back with a vengeance in southern Taiwan’s urban concrete jungles. Hot on the heels of MVRDV’s recently unveiled sunken lagoon park in Tainan, Dutch firm Mecanoo designed a sprawling green-roofed train station for Kaohsiung, Taiwan’s second largest city. The new station will serve as the crown jewel of the massive Kaohsiung Metropolitan Area Underground Railway Project and inject great swathes of publicly accessible green space to serve as a multi-layered destination that helps reduce the urban heat island effect.
Set on an 8.5-hectare site with a sunken station plaza, the 182,000-square-meter Kaohsiung Train Station will be a major transit hub serving trains, metros, local buses, intercity buses, taxis, and bicycles. A 35,000-square-meter green canopy sprawls out across the square like an amoeba and extends rounded arms that connect the various forms of transport. The underside of the canopy continues the organic motif with asymmetrical oval-like ceiling sound panels and lights, as well as large rounded skylights.
“The station’s large curvilinear shaped canopy reaches out to the city in a powerful gesture, acting as a green connector that unifies different modes of transport, and represents Kaohsiung’s vision for the future as a sustainable city,” writes Mecanoo. The landscaped canopy shields a shaded open public plaza from the harsh sun and offers a space for community events such as farmers’ markets and festivals. The architects will also move the colonial Japanese station building to the project site to showcase an interesting juxtaposition between traditional and contemporary design. The project is expected to be complete by 2023.
Via NOW News
Images via Mecanoo