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Niyang River Visitor Center / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects

© Chen Su

Architects: Zhaoyang Architects, Standardarchitecture
Location: Nyingchi, Xizang (Tibet), China
Area: 430.0 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: Chen Su

Design Team: Zhao Yang, Chen Ling
Critic Team: Zhang ke, Zhang hong, Hou zhenghua
Cost: 1,000,000 rmb

Floor Plan

From the architect. Mirui Road is a tourist road that meets Highway 318 connecting Tibet and Sichuan province. This road meanders southwards along the Niyang River. Within this 20km distance to the Brahmaptra Canyon, the specific terrain and landscape of Niyang River can be enjoyed from the road. Daze Village was chosen to be the entrance to this tourist attraction. There is little land left for further development in this village, therefore the river beach along the road was the only choice for the site of a tourist center.

© Chen Su

The road separates the river beach from the nearby mountain. How to establish relationships between an isolated building and its surroundings is the main concern of our design. The building’s exterior boundary is a response to the border conditions. The inner public space is “carved” out from the irregular-shaped volume. 

© Chen Su

The central courtyard connects four openings, responding to the orientations and circulation. The left over mass after “carving” accommodates three major interior functions- a ticket office, a dressing room for rafting and toilets. This seemingly arbitrary plan is actually shaped by circulation, program and site conditions. The geometric character of the volume and space forms a dialogue with the surrounding landscape. 

Detail

The construction of this building adopted and developed the techniques of the Tibetan vernacular. On top of the concrete foundation a 600mm thick load-bearing wall is erected. Most openings have deep recessions. The 400mm thick walls at both sides of the openings work as buttresses, increasing the overall structural stability and reducing the interior span as well. Beams for bigger spans are made from several small logs bonded together. 

© Chen Su

A 150mm thick layer of Aga clay covers the waterproof membrane. Aga clay is a vernacular waterproofing material. It stiffens when tampered with water and works as another layer of waterproofing and heat insulation. Its plasticity allows gutters to be shaped. Roof drainage is well organized with these gutters and channel steel scuppers.

© Chen Su

Color is a crucial element of Tibetan visual culture. We introduce a color installation into the building’s inner public space. The local mineral pigments are directly painted on the stone surfaces. The transitions of colors highlight the geometric transitions of space. From morning to dusk, the sunshine changes its direction and altitude angle, penetrating through the different openings. 

© Chen Su

When passing through the building, people perceive ever-changing color combination from different perspective and at different time. There is no cultural symbolism in this color concept. These colors are abstract. They multiply the spatial experience and also work as an performance of colors independent from the concept of architecture. 

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects © Chen Su
© Chen Su

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects Floor Plan
Floor Plan
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects Section
Section
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects Detail
Detail

Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects Drawing
Drawing
Niyang River Visitor Center  / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects Model
Model

* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Niyang River Visitor Center / Standardarchitecture + Zhaoyang Architects" 26 Feb 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed 26 Feb 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=480334>
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