Urban R&D Station

[AD1 2012]
How can we, as designers, contribute to a city in need of inspiration and energy? And how can we help to rebuild Christchurch and drive it into the future?

The Urban R&D Station is a move to give Christchurch quality designed architecture in conjunction with a business attraction, job opportunities and new innovative textile research. The theoretical client is ICEBREAKER, a New Zealand clothing company. The building runs in partnership with the Rural R&D Station receiving wool to clean process and create ICEBREAKER products. The building facilitates a moderate sized factory for the creation of clothing, a research and development sector and a retail area which exposes the customers to the manufacturing process. It is located south east of the Central Business District in an industrial area, which has plans for a large retail refurbishment across the river.

The idea driving the concept of the building is drawn from the motion of spinning. This is derived directly from the manufacturing process where many fibers are spun into a single yarn. The concept has been carried through the design with axial forms, spun material flow, twisted structure and rotational circulation through the building. This is beneficial as it provides a smooth flow of materials though the building as well as exposing all occupants to each other and the their surroundings creating an awareness.

Tim de Beer, May 2012


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