Sunday, July 27, 2008

New Casino project in Catalina Island_01

Mutative Gossamer for Indeterminate Space, New *Casino Project in Catalina Island

gossamer, n.
1. A soft, sheer, gauzy fabric.2. Something delicate, light, or flimsy.3. A fine film of cobwebs often seen floating in the air

The site is the north seaside of Avalon bay in Catalina Island, California. Currently, there is existing building, ‘Casino’ whose meaning is ‘gathering place’, and it was built in 1929. Its program is mainly a theater at first floor and a ballroom at second floor. Its gross area is approximately 96,000 sq ft. The main purpose of this project was to design a new building to replace this old building.
I did not focus on the building itself, but concentrated on the space between building and seaside of Avalon bay. The Casino, an old traditional-style building, blocks the pathway to the seaside area of the site. In addition, the inside of the building space is also closed by its thick and opaque walls, and the programs and functions of Casino never seem to be changed like its concrete structure.
Therefore, I proposed a nice outdoor space which gives people continuity of a seaside walk. People’s interesting experience along the seaside of Avalon bay is maximized at the site of the new Casino building. The affect which people get from the new Casino building comes from two kinds of transparency. One is the transparency of visibility, and another is the transparency of accessibility. I did not want to put a big window or curtain wall on the building to get the affect of transparency. Instead of windows, I made most parts of the building into columns and a roof like a gossamer. The shadow from the delicate members of the roof, the contrast between the eaves and the horizon line, and the movement between different spatial proportions and levels will let the tourists walk, rest and flow along the esplanade under the roof with buoyancy. During this experience, no wall will stop the people; thus they would see the beautiful scenery of the Avalon bay without any interruption. In terms of program, I placed several interesting programs on this site along the esplanade which is extended from center of Avalon bay, and made the esplanade connect these programs. However, every program is not defined by conventional name of the function, but defined by an affect generated from the specific physical condition enclosing each location of the site. For the detail, I will describe this project from viewpoint of 3 categories. First one is ’borders’. Second one is ‘aperture and fenestration’. Final issue is ‘program and partition’.
* ‘Casino’ means the gathering place’ in the Latin language.

No comments: