Seoul Floating Islands by H Architecture + Haeahn Architecture


Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-02In pursuit of “Han River Renaissance”, the Seoul Metropolitan Government’s master plan to revitalize select old districts of the city, the government organized a national competition to design a series of man-made floating islands by a southern bank of Han River.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-03H’s winning submission of “Soul Flora” for the three inter-connected islands depicts the lifecycle of a flower – seed, bud, and blossom.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-01The “Seed” contains a natural environment with a grass beach, marina, club house and floating pods of flora that illuminate the night with the appearance of flickering candle lights.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-04The “Bud” is the Urban Entertainment Center offering IT cafes, 3D theaters, interactive games and exhibition space.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-05The “Blossom” will offer visitors restaurants, performance and entertainment venues and cultural exhibit space.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-06The “Bud” and “Blossom” have overlapping curtain walls that blur the interior and exterior spaces and blend the Han River into the building’s interior.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-08The roof of the club house in “Seed” contains arrays of photovoltaic cells to help provide power to the island.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-09Civic plaza and promenade by day, and high-tech stage and backdrop by night, Soul Flora will be the first Han River Renaissance project to be built, achieving the city government’s vision successfully.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-10The 20,400 square meter complex will offer three cultural centers, featuring performances, water sports and aquatic events.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-12The islands can accommodate 6,200 people and are set to make the Han River, which 59 million people visited last year, an even more popular tourist spot.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-20While artificial islands have been constructed before, most famously in Dubai, they have generally been formed by pouring sand on the seabed to create artificial land.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-07Seoul’s islands take a different approach and actually float on the surface of the river using an enormous buoy secured in place by 28 mooring chains, a design which ensures it can withstand changing river levels and bad weather.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-11The three story building which holds all facilities is covered with 54 square meters of solar panels, which produced 6 kilowatts of energy each day, providing the facilities below with electricity, and also illuminating the facades at night.
Seoul-Floating-Islands-by-H-Architecture-13Location: Seoul, South Korea 
Architects: H Architecture + Haeahn Architecture 
Area: 24,000 sqm 
Year: 2011 
Photographs: Haeahn Architecture

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