Construction has begun on the Henning Larsen-designed Shaw Auditorium, the newest addition to the Clear Water Bay campus of The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology - ranked number one among the world’s young universities and a major global research institution.
The multi-purpose auditorium will be a dynamic new venue for the campus’ cultural and artistic functions. At its core, the auditorium for concerts, lectures, musicals and dramatic and visual productions, is equipped with modular seating that can be adapted to allow for multiple arrangements, ranging from 850 up to 1300 seats. The hall can also become a large flat floor area providing spaces for conventions, exhibitions or large university open days. Reflecting the university’s pursuit for innovation, the curved auditorium walls will function as a 360-degree projection screen, enabling immersive audio-visual experiences. Auxiliary classroom spaces, public furniture and an integrated café will support the broad public program of the university, creating a cultural living room for the entire campus.
Perched on a hilltop overlooking Sai Kung Bay, the Shaw Auditorium takes the form of three-layered white rings. The concentric volumes of the Shaw Auditorium will extend panoramic views to the surrounding scenery, doubling in function as oversized sunshades. By reducing energy consumption through this climate-optimized design, the Shaw Auditorium is poised to become the first of this type of building in Hong Kong to achieve a BEAM Platinum sustainability rating.
“Our design aims to become an example of sustainable subtropical architecture, hopefully influencing the construction industry in this region to design with more consideration to our climate. We also aimed to create the most transformative and innovative auditorium in this region to match the reputation of the University, and to make sure the venue will be lively at all times,” Claude Bøjer Godefroy, Partner and Design Principal at Henning Larsen, explains.
The building’s rounded form acts to orchestrate the surrounding campus flows; a gateway to the university campus and a cultural incubator for student life. With the auditorium at the center of adjacent academic and social spaces, The Shaw Auditorium becomes a nucleus of pedestrian activity and a bridge between academic and student life at the university.
Henning Larsen designed The Shaw Auditorium in close collaboration with Wong Tung and Partners, WSP Hong Kong, Theatreplan, Marshall Day Acoustics, URBIS, Inhabit, CTA and RLB. Construction is expected to reach completion in 2021.