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Heavy and Thick

Downtown Los Angeles, California

Instructor: Margaret Griffin

In Collaboration with ChienHan Yen

Curtain wall system has become so ubiquitous that almost all the modern high-rise buildings used glass wall as exterior finish. However, it is not necessary. If looking back to the high-rise buildings in the 19th century, you will see many buildings are constructed by stones. Using heavy materials in the tower was relinquished because of the cost and the complexity, which doesn’t mean the heavy materials are not suitable to the high rise building. In our project, we are against the overuse of the hackneyed curtain wall facade by bring back the heavier and thicker facade. In fact, the thick facade provide with more flexibility to us. For example, It would become a parapet if it extended up from the floor. Or it would become the shading for the outdoor space if it dropped down from the ceiling. We have proved that there are also many advantages on employing a thicker facade.

Exploded diagram