An official groundbreaking ceremony was held this week for Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects' highly sustainable Yale-NUS campus in Singapore. The new school, which is a collaboration between Yale University and the National University of Singapore, will be built with environmental sustainability in mind. The campus will seek the highest rating under the Building and Construction Authority’s Green Mark, which is Singapore’s green building certification system, and it will feature a unique rain water filtration and capture system.
The architectural language used by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects seeks to balance the traditions of Yale’s campus in New Haven with those of Southeast Asia. According to the Pelli Clarke Pelli website, the floors in residential buildings will be broken into “neighborhoods,” and each will have its own sky garden, a landscaped outdoor space that is common in Singapore’s high-rises. The center of the campus will also feature an arboretum with six heritage trees.
Singapore gets a lot of rain, and the new campus will interact with water in interesting and clever ways. A large square oculus will be placed in the roof of the campus’ main gate, creating a dramatic frame for rain. And rainwater will be captured and filtered in an “eco-pond” located in a garden at the center of the campus. Sun- and rain-screened colonnades and roofs will also be used throughout the campus to protect students and teachers from the elements. Additionally, the architects plan to use natural ventilation and advanced building systems in order to reduce energy use on campus.