A piece of sculpture, a twisting tower, Dr. Chau Chak Wing Building

Oct 16, 2019

A piece of sculpture, a twisting tower, Dr. Chau Chak Wing Building

This is a building for all of Sydney. There will be extensive public spaces with an external design that complements and acknowledges its place within the immediate area and within the city. This skyscraper is named titled after ver. Chau Chak Wing, a chines Australian businessman and philanthropist who donated $20 million for the building’s construction. The idea behind the design of the building is a tree-house structure. This structure is a business school building of the University of Technology Sydney in Sydney, new wales, Australia, and the first building in Australia designed by Canadian American architect Frank Gehry. Sydney’s Frank Gehry. designed Dr Chau Chak Wing building will open a new page in business education in Australia.

The building will have two distinct external facades, one composed of undulating brick, referencing the sandstone and the dignity of Sydney’s urban brick heritage, and the other of large, angled sheets of glass to fracture and mirror the image of surrounding buildings.

The tower is named after Dr.Chau Chak Wing, a Chinese Australian businessman, and philanthropist who donated $20 million for the building's construction. The 13-storey tower (12 level of office space & open areas, 1 level of maintenance) provides teaching, learning, research and office accommodation for 1,256-1,300 students and 300-326 academic staff. The building's façade, which was made of 320,000 custom designed bricks, is described as the "squashed brown paper bag". Frank Gehry said, "Maybe it's a brown paper bag, but it's flexible on the inside, there's a lot of room for changes or movement."

An entrance from The Goods Line – a pedestrian pathway – is located on the eastern border of the site.The building was constructed by Lend Lease Group which was appointed in November 2012. It is estimated that 320,000 custom-designed bricks were used for its construction. Construction of the building started in late 2012. The building structure was topped out in December 2013. The Dr. Chau Chak Wing building construction was completed in November 2014 and the official opening took place on 2 February 2015.

At an urban scale, the Dr. Chau Chak Wing Building is a piece of sculpture, a twisting tower made up of 320,000 individually lain bricks. This material choice relates to the history of this suburb, which is dotted with old industrial brick buildings. Yet, unlike many of the surrounding structures, which are solid and impenetrable, the Dr. Chau Chak Wing Building replaces flatness with endless folds, dips, and curves. Up close, it’s easy to appreciate the texture and variation in the bricks, which flicker and peel from the façade. These bricks, along with the rectangular windows that puncture the brick curves, also bring a human scale to the building.

Inside, these glass cuts reveal their function, bringing light deep into the interior. Yet, despite these good intentions, the exterior form and interior experience never quite feel arranged. Columns pierce the building at odd angles, interrupting circulation spaces. Brick butts up against plasterboard. Certain flourishes, like the faceted stainless steel staircase, appear gimmicky and garnish, and bear little relationship to the building’s overall language.

Yet the heartening experience of walking around the Dr. Chau Chak Wing Building’s warped, wacky and wonderful façade never quite translates to the interior, where the spaces come undone. In this way, Gehry LLP’s first building on Australian soil is conflicting, in more ways than one. It is undoubtedly a welcome addition to Sydney’s skyline, a courageous and clever departure from the generic glass towers that are coming to define all urban centers. As an external form, it’s also well appreciated, with members of the public delighting in the façade’s expressiveness.