m1 | Urban Design Studio
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Winter term 2015 

Program: Diverse new urban district with mixed-use facilities
Site: 600.000m2 
Location: New Territories, Hong Kong 
People: 60.000
Land use: 40% of the site
Plot ratio: 4,2


The aim is to explore architectural and urban design alternatives through a focused investigation of e-pathy habitat that addresses the social agenda of livability, affordability, empathy, and resilience. The studio was research-based and trying to investigate new options of  urban planning and living for the Kowloon City Bay Area. 

"As implied by the site context and its adjacent development history, the issues are multi-tasking where the proposed area should be ‘habitats’ to fulfill collective cultural desires, to realize the public interests, to accommodate the ecological restoration within the post-reclaimed waterfronts, and to co-habit the pressing needs of aged and youth communities."

— wallace chang

A D D   O N

The project has been selected for the studio exhibition at the Faculty of Architecture at the Chinese University of Hong Kong  showing the best projects of the term.

Further, the project was nominated for the Piranesi Award 2016.

You enter the island as it were, you enter another world. green space surrounds you. you can feel the vibrant city while exploring new spaces and quiet corners. Stepping into your new home in harmony with water and the city.

the island floorplan_ahinterbrandnerthe island floorplan_ahinterbrandner

the research

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research on history, hight-relations and usage

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the masterplan

— adjustment of view relations and hights with cuhk and Ma On Shan

— harmonic integration of the new instead of hiding: new typologies create a new identity


— access via bridges or the new ferry piers that offer high connectivity

— highway lifted | lower ground floor area for a new integration of mtr | pathways | access to the waterfront

— spacious green areas | natural parks as well as urban green

— cohabitation of human beings and animals for a new awareness of our surroundings

— reviving the harbour and ferry pier | waterfront on both sides as usable space connected to living space

— new archipelago between islands and existing waterfront

the island siteplan_ahinterbrandnerthe island siteplan_ahinterbrandner

final masterplan layout vs.
different states of development

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the landscape scale

the island concept_ahinterbrandnerthe island concept_ahinterbrandner

the architectural scale

Different housing typologies at the site offer various living spaces and neighbourhoods. The megastructures were introduced to create enough density on the island as well as for identification reasons. The new building type offers a point of identification for the residents with its landmark character. Besides the huge building blocks, there are two other housing types: The floating islands, that are inspired by the floating fish farm structures existing in this area, as well as a village-like structure that offers the possibility of owning your own home translated into a dense Hong Kong like version.

the unit scale

For a more in-depth look at the housing units, I decided to work on the superblocks. I developed 10 different unit types that offer different qualities due to the needs of its different users. From single user units up to shared family and student units until penthouse units. 

»a home is not a house.«

— Reyner Banham