The concept for the Pavilion was to create a spatial experience that harnessed the physical senses(sound, smell, environment) and experiences of Singapore. It was therefore essential to understand the pedestrian movement through the building so that these senses could be optimised for the visitor. A sinuous flow through the pavilion become the objective and after several form finding studies concluded a drum became the most practical response as it maximised acoustic and circulation properties.
The drum form required penetrating to allow the sustainable/sound/natural ventilation and light aspects of the performance to function and to take a central position within the Pavilion. These emerged as cones that were 4 different sizes in diameter. They allowed rainwater and water features to fall through the structure and allow light and sound to bounce off the internal surfaces. The secondary function for these cone forms were to serve as structural 'legs' in which the Pavilion could create ' platforms' (floor level) to support and cantilever form. It allowed the facade to therefore wrap the building and appear to float to the South facing facade allowing views into the internal ground floor plane.
The pavilion 'drum' is located within the site boundary which is defined by a rectangular plan of surface water. The pavilion therefore becomes an island in which you make a transitional journey towards. The ground plane of the pavilion is circular in plan and is ' punched' with water pools which relate to the vertical cones that structurally support the external envelope. They magnify the sounds of water falling, filter and direct sun/daylight and aid in ventilating the building therefore reducing the mechanical plant. They are efficient ' super' columns that sculpt and orientate the internal spaces.
Helical ramps take you up through the building introducing new themes and spatial experiences as you ascend towards the roof garden which provide views across the EXPO 2010 site. The cones terminate as penetration through the structure to provide a physical connection between the upper levels and the ground plane. The facade provides the final architectural treatment in the form of the outer envelope' exploding' outwards like a water droplet hitting the surface of water. The ' exploding' narrative is articulated in the form of shading ' fins' which are random rectangular planes which provide a shading performance to reduce the solar heat gain on the facade surface throughout the day. It forms part if the holistic calling performance of the pavilion. The pavilion aims to capture and transform the essence Singapore into a visitor experience within a purely functional architectural expression.
This scheme was awarded First Prize for its innovative design and its holistic approach to sustainable design.