International Design Competition for Yeonsu Youth Center 2022


연수구 청소년 수련관 건립 국제설계공모 2022

location : 313-12 Songdo-dong, Yeonsu-gu, Incheon, Republic of Korea
site area : 2,973㎡
gross floor area : 8,230㎡
program : Youth Center, Sports Center(GYM, Indoor Pool)
team : Safari Architects
result : 4th Prize

link : www.ysgyouthcenter.kr




Floating Grounds
- The New Youth Center in daily life -


Public facilities in modern days are involved in providing various utilities to people in cities as a place to relax, a cafe, an everyday lounge and a playground to children. The New Youth Center is designed to be an open place, like a school playground, embracing everyday life of people, communities, integration between cities and society and cultures. By vertically ‘Floating Grounds’ on Songdo's Cityscape, we design a symbolic landscape of Songdo and suggest a new paradigm to the urban community bringing society, people and youth together.

A promenade to daily life : New Community Place in Songdo CityThe school playground has involved in an important role as a communal space for local communities. It used to be a Void in the city center for a long time providing copious events of youth and the local residents. However, in cities where it is densely populated which leads to lack of venues to contain various contents, school fields lost its role as an open space for communities.
 

This proposal suggests vertical ‘Floating Grounds’ containing a community of public facilities in contrast to the current isolated island-type building. Four unique content are stacked on each Ground and the space created by pushing and pulling each Ground, an integrated void and various internal/external activity spaces were planned. Contents created in these vertical grounds and the transparent space open for each floor provide coexistence of users, everyday encounters and on-going dialogue between the space and the city. This unorthodox and modern Youth Center unify the community and citizens of Yeonsugu and will evolve into a new urban community facility that contains lively youth experience contents.

Maximize Multi-Layered Grounds : The Desire of Youth ExperienceAdolescence is a period in which each one of them should be able to express their desires and form their dreams. Experience, interactions and emotional exchanges with peers are crucial since these desires are influences through relationships hence youngsters needs space, opportunities and contents. We built the New Youth Center as original and interesting event-type Grounds, and created an experience space that stimulates the youth's sense of sharing and expresses their desires through large and small-scale voids that connect the spaces. By vertically stacking four unique Grounds, the horizontal playground function where daily encounters take place has been restructured vertically.

The grounds of the lower floors emphasized openness as a coexistence space (Public/Exercise & Office), and the grounds of the upper floors emphasized independence and creativity as a youth-only space (Youth/ Leisure & Activity). The 4 Grounds are composed of specialized content for each floor, but through the huge void space inside, it is planned so that users' communication and events can coexist. In particular, the first floor was zoned as an open and projected public space for easy access by all users, and a landscape facility for youth experience activities and a terrace where the natural scenery can be viewed were planned on the outer periphery of each ground. In addition, for the user’s hands-on community, spiral staircase and book step bring youth and each Grounds together.

Youth Platform With Story : Insertion of Various Public Space
Yeonsu-gu Youth Center is a place for youth activities and citizen’s sports center. This should be planned as a place for various events in the city enabling communication between users. In order to become a new community facility in the city, a platform space containing various contents and stories was vertically stacked and an external space communicating with the city center was placed. The active void space created between breaks the limits of the traditional stacked structure. External programs for each ground and facade with projection were brought in to secure frontally and symbolism to bring control over the condition of the site located on a dead-end road. The Internal vertical spiral staircase seen through projection and internal/external programs that motivates youngsters form a platform full of interesting stories and experiences. An urban community facility should be a ‘living room’ in the city where anyone can be welcomed and be a place filled with colorful stories of them.
 


New Songdo City : Harmony Between Nature And ArtificialitySongdo's unique landscape originates from the birth of the city. This is because, geopolitically, it is a place where the West Sea and artificial land meet. In order to respond to the original building of Songdo International City and to suggest a sense of place that can arouse the interest of youth, the new identity of the Youth Center was revealed with the four vertically raised Grounds and the façade. 
In particular, the site is located at the node where residential areas, administrative welfare centers, religious facilities, and natural landscapes (waterfront lakes, neighborhood parks) meet, so a large shared space should be inserted to perform community space like a ‘school playground in the city’. Users mainly approached from the 10M road on the northeast side, and a public space was installed along the front road to provide a resting space for youth-related events and citizens. The building was separated from the residential facilities on the east side to block noise. The main entrance of the Youth Center was placed on the north side to emphasize the frontality, and the Resident-open sports entrance was installed on the east side to consider the separation of circulations for each facility. A sub-entrance was placed on the west side of the adjacent site to attract the circulation linked from the administrative support center into the recreational sports space.
 


Public Ground : 1st Floor PlanThe first floor is a public ground where youth and citizens come together. The entrance plan was made on three sides to allow access from anywhere and the projection and visibility were enhanced by curtain walls. The user access was separated for each facility by placing main entrance of Youth Center on the north side and Resident-open sports on the east side. A grand spiral staircase was installed in the lobby of the youth facility to connect the flow from the upper part of the youth facility, revealing the symbolism in the void space and encouraging interest of the youth. A changing room for the multipurpose gym is installed separately in the Resident-open sports lobby to enable independent operation. Both youth and residents have an access to the central multipurpose gym located between each lobby and a large flexible space is planned through the Moving Wall.
 

The first floor is a public ground where youth and citizens come together. The entrance plan was made on three sides to allow access from anywhere and the projection and visibility were enhanced by curtain walls. The user access was separated for each facility by placing main entrance of Youth Center on the north side and Resident-open sports on the east side. A grand spiral staircase was installed in the lobby of the youth facility to connect the flow from the upper part of the youth facility, revealing the symbolism in the void space and encouraging interest of the youth. A changing room for the multipurpose gym is installed separately in the Resident-open sports lobby to enable independent operation. Both youth and residents have an access to the central multipurpose gym located between each lobby and a large flexible space is planned through the Moving Wall.



Health Ground : 2nd, 3rd Floor PlanThe second and third floors are Health Ground, grouping Fitness Center and Swimming pool. This Ground can be moved to the core of the resident-open sports so sports related programs can be operated solely. Health Ground is equipped with multiple sports tracks in a visually open space-both from the inside and outside, so that it can promote physical fitness for all who visits the facility.
On the second floor, the fitness center is placed looking down on the front square and standing seats are planned where you can see GX room and multipurpose gym. The third floor has swimming pool with 25mX5 lanes and the 8M floor height and front open view plan for the openness. On the east side terrace, folding doors are installed to provide separate space for sun-beds where you can relax looking over the scenery of nature. Outside the outdoor terrace, there are 50M track and various outdoor sports facilities for users.
 


Youth Ground : 5th , 6th Floor PlanThe fifth and sixth floors are Youth Ground, grouping programs and activity area for teenagers. We enabled all facilities to be visually connected for creative thinking through the VOID space as it’s designed for activities, creative classes and education only for youth. On the fifth floor, the Creative Science Experience center and Multimedia Room in the Youth-only lobby and youth Specialized center were designed as open spaces. 
This space is planned as a maker space that can be planned in variable ways, allowing future-oriented education. In particular, colorful and active landscape facilities were installed on the outer terrace to secure a natural view and to plan a Fun & Play Zone to encourage physical activities and curiosity of young people. On the sixth floor, the dance practice room and music practice room were zoned together to separate the noise from the other facilities. The dance practice room, especially, can be arranged flexibly to reflect the diversity of the youth group.
 


Play Ground : 7th , 8th Floor PlanThe 7th and 8th floor is Play Ground with open Book-Step, encouraging teenagers with creative thinking in leisure facilities. The Creative Book-Step covering the entire Youth-only Space (5F~8F) allows access to all youth facilities. The staircase-type bookshelves are planned around the large void space in the center and the light falling down the glass ceiling and the connecting flow give a sensation of daily promenade. Gigantic bookcases are designed on all the walls of the bookshop that come into contact with the youth program so the young people can freely take out books and share their experience to one another walking through the Book-Step. On the seventh floor, the Bakery room was separately constructed and arranged for easier ventilation. Healing Forest space was placed on the outer terrace and tent zone was installed for small-scale camping. On the eighth floor, there are a youth conference room, a large lecture hall and a music listening room connected to the Book- Step. The lecture hall accommodate more than 150 people and the auditorium and stage are separately placed as well as flexible seating are



Office & Parking : 4th , B1st Floor PlanThe 4th floor is the operation and office space for the Youth Center and separate floor was planned to focus on the management. It consists of the Operation Office, after-school academy instructor’s office, nurse room and etc. The first basement floors was a parking lot accommodating a total of 31 parking spaces. By matching the ground level withe the parking lot on the first basement floor of the Administrative Welfare center, two connecting passages were planned enabling vehicle flow between the two buildings.


Vertical Grounds : Specialized Space For Coexistence and Youth NeedsThe spiral staircase in the main lobby on the first floor and the circular staircase system installed on the outside terrace of the Floating Grounds connect the programs for each ground and integrate the community facilities of the huge void space. The spiral staircase is designed as a photo zone that brings out curiosity by applying fun shapes and colors. Each staircase of Vertical Grounds allows meet-ups and communication between visitors and serves as a connecting trail of rest and play.
 



Activity & Outdoor ProgramThe outdoor space of each ground terrace of the Youth Center, the public space on the first floor and the program at the rooftop garden blurring the boundaries between the city and are integrated into everyday space for citizens. The open outdoor space on the first floor provides youth events and a resting area and the terrace specialized for each ground provides unique landscape content suitable for the nature of the ground. The vertical stairs for of the terrace from the first floor to the rooftop can give a promenade sensation. This vertical walkway offers views of Songdo Landmark City Park from the south side and Water Front Lake views from the east side.
 



ElevationLow-E double glass is placed on the northeast façade facing 10M road side to show the Youth Center open to the city, revealing a openness. The specialized space of Grounds shown through the transparency of the façade becomes the façade of the Youth center and the side turns to the community facility of the city. The open entrance is planned at the north main entrance of the first floor Public Grounds to engage more influx of visitors and residents. The material of elevation for each ground highlights the ground of the horizontal mass and horizontal louvers are selected for the shading effect of the southeastern side program. The color of the horizontal louvers is finished with wooden finish to give comfortable and warm feelings for emotional development of adolescents. The tension of the projected curtain wall and horizontal louver color creates a unique cityscape of Songdo International city.


Section & Environmental Sustainable SystemWe propose Mega-Trusses system in order to solve the cantilever space of Floating Grounds for each floor and the height and load of sports facilities on the first to third floor above the ground. The material of the interim and exterior spaces are designed to show the structural beauty of the truss. The multipurpose gym on the first floor has 9M high ceiling enabling various sports program. The upper part of the Book-step space on 5~8th floors move the ground was planned to have a skylight for Volume lights to fall down. Facilities for youth and residents are placed on the first to third floors and zoned the fifth to eighth floors as facilities for youth separately to highlight its purpose, but combine urban community facilities with void spaces and Vertical Grounds for each floor. The open façade and skylights of the lower floors are planned to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and eco-friendly passive items are applied through the self-shading space created by the Floating Grounds.



Structure & Construction: Factory fabrication of Mega-Trusses


The most important issue in term of structural planning of the Youth Center is to plan it as sports facilities on the lower floors of the building. In order to ease the height and load of the multipurpose gym and indoor swimming pool, a Mega-Trusses system was planned on the outer periphery to connect it to the main pillar of the building. Each Floating Grounds was also managed with Mega-Trusses system, SRC to ease 6M cantilever. This Mega-Trusses system is compete through on-site welding work by factory fabrication for the completeness of construction.






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