Hangzhou Harmony Garden • Scenic Garden
Project Location:Yangmeishan Road, Liuxia Town, Xihu District, Hangzhou
Site Area:573, 000㎡
Building Area:689, 000㎡
Building Storey:2-11 floors
Designed/completed:2005 / 2010
the planning and design of the community are extended with the fluctuations and continuations of the mountain forest. Its overall planning embraces the mountain as its regional “green core”, and integrates the forest belts extended from four directions with the residential quarters; besides of reserving the west water pond within the planning scope and opening up a new small-scale water surface, it also strives to employ the technique of “highlighting mountain and water landscape” to construct the ecological individuality of the residential quarters.
In the spatial planning and design of Harmony Garden, the designer has implemented the spatial concept of “hierarchical exclusivity” long upheld by CCDI, with the aim of providing corresponding spatial places for various levels of exchanges. The exchange spaces are clearly classified into three levels in the planning and design, that is, community space, cluster space and neighbourhood space.
The design of Scenic Garden has inherited the Phase I natural style of Harmony Garden, combined the community with original tree textures to plan a spatial axis running from north to south, and followed these textures to connect with Phase I’s community space and to visually and organically link up with the east and west mountains. Here a dozen of camphor trees and dawn redwoods, all decades old, have been retained. Based on the shape of the site, the original architectural layout texture is followed to design six clusters. The garden residence cluster, considering its small planning scale and their particularity, mainly emphasizes the privacy of neighbourhood space, so the elevation of this neighbourhood space will be 2m higher than the road elevation.
Place construction: Trees point out the road home.
A visit to Harmony Garden is a very pleasant experience. Getting away from the busy downtown and glimpsing the distant mountain ranges through the approaching forest, you will be led into a silent community with a unique atmosphere by a zigzag mountain road. On the road, you first encounter rows and rows of dawn redwoods, followed by a dense grove of camphor trees (small ones in the size of the mouth of a bowl, and big ones requiring encircling by two people). The cinerous Harmony Hut nestled in the forest (sales office & club) is partly hidden and partly visible. After crossing the gate of the community and going up the slope, what you see becomes both strange and familiar: There is a new asphalt road, roofed by the camphor trees on both sides, and the sunshine drips through the dense branches and leaves and leaves mottled shades on the ground. Several big trees standing at the intersection are designed into a roundabout pattern, just like they were born for that mission. Going forward, the mood of returning home is also leisurely relieved with the approaching of the red walls and sloping roofs, and this is why the townhouses are particularly built on the slopes at the foot of the mountain. Each house is divided into the front and back parts, connected by a corridor, so as to reduce the building massing and adjust the front and back elevations to adapt to different terrains. Each house also has its own standard module, flexibly designed according to the terrain, trees and mountain landscape and staggered up and down or back and forth to adapt to the local situations.
This is the place construction of Harmony Garden: This is where the old trees seek new growth on thin land under the new planning. Besides the trees, there are also the ponds embraced by reeds, the original slopes full of vigour and other vivid scenarios carefully retained in the community garden or in front of or behind the houses.
What is worthy of further mentioning is the design of “Harmony Hut”, which, occupying a building area of only 1,200㎡, has consumed painstaking efforts on the part of the architect and has ultimately become the most important finishing touch in the entire community.
In terms of planning space, “Harmony Hut” is located in the densest forest of Harmony Garden. This forest is seated at the turning of Waxberry Mountain road, the road dividing the north and south areas, and, in the preliminary planning; it was especially retained and intentionally designed into the entrance of this community. The architectural form of Harmony Hut is divided into three parts of different sizes, which are gently arranged on the empty land in the forest and perfectly linked up by exquisitely designed corridors. Seen from its form, although the architecture adopts the Chinese traditional big roofs, corridors and courtyards as its basic symbols, it has nevertheless created the flowing spaces of Western modern architectures, with thought-provoking inner and outer changes. The architectural facade has achieved a delicate balance between bricks and glass, and the steady architectural modeling, combined with both simple and unsophisticated cinerous cultural bricks and warm solid wood window frames, has created a confident yet low-key presence in its silent surrounding environment.
Any undeveloped project has contains its own rich information, waiting for interpretation and construction by architects. This is not only a full respect for regional characteristics, but also one of the most important responsibilities of architects. When an unmistakable consideration of respect for both the history and the nature runs through an architectural creation, the resultant architectural work no doubt would have its life and soul. Walking in Harmony Garden, the original terrain and landform become more orderly and well-arranged, and the vegetation becomes richer and more rationally-collocated; the combination of trees and houses achieves a natural harmony. Set off by the far mountains, the elegant and nostalgic breath of life flowing in this garden no doubt will profoundly affect every one paying a visit here.