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Jun 11

Skyscrapers in Seoul: here’s yet another skyscraper proposal for the architectural zoo that is the Yongsan International Business District of Seoul – this time a 385-metre-high tower by architects Kohn Pedersen Fox with a vertiginous swimming pool sticking out two thirds of the way up. Block H will be located in the northeast corner of the fast-growing commercial district that was masterplanned by Daniel Libeskind, where fifteen other architects have also been commissioned by South Korean developer DreamHub to design landmark towers. Architects wrote about this projects:

Scheduled for completion in 2016, Block H consists of a luxury 5-Star hotel and high-end serviced residential building containing 167,225 square meters of space. The 385-meter-tall tower sits on a 14,600-square-meter parcel of land on the northeastern border of the YIBD, achieving an FAR of 11.4%. KPF’s building is situated in a way that seeks to mediate the extreme height (665m) of the landmark office tower to the northwest, and transition this height to the lower scale of the residential blocks beyond. KPF sought to intensify the social aspect of the street through a distinct urban landscape and diverse program at the lower levels of the building.

“Our goal for this project is to establish and make connections to street life, the new city of Yongsan, and to the larger context of Seoul. We do this through a thoughtful approach to the building’s program, position, and character.”
KPF Design Principal, Trent Tesch

Fundamental to the logic of the unique shape of the design is the idea that the building is comprised of apartments and hotel rooms that demand ample natural light, dramatic views, and maximum privacy. These three internal parameters have shaped the DNA of the Architecture. Like an organic system that seeks equilibrium with nature, the design grows outward from the center, towards views and light, into three distinct “wings.” The three wings guarantee that the residential apartments will have a major corner view from the living space, while maximizing its privacy from the adjacent unit. Unlike most “Y” type high-rise towers, the design “steps” each wing asymmetrically so there is a low-wing, a mid-wing and a high-wing. The building is carefully oriented to increase views to the Han River to the south (low-wing), the Yongsan Park to the east (mid-wing), and the Nam-San historic district and adjacent landmark tower to the north (high-wing).

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