A place and its makers

by Peace Chiu and Adrian Ho on Feb 6, 2015 in Architecture
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Perspective investigates the architecture scenes in five Asian cities with the help of sought-after local architects with deep-rooted associations and affection for the urban settings which they call home

There is a Chinese saying which goes, "The sparrow may be small, but all its vital organs are there." It is also a rather apt — and quaint — description of Hong Kong. As Rocco Yim, co-founder and executive director of Rocco Design Architects, notes, the territory is renowned for its ability "to optimise resources, to get the maximum out of the minimum".

Yim cites the new campus of the Chu Hai College of Higher Education, one of his firm's current projects, as an example of an architecture that embodies this spirit. The project, he explains, is "carefully designed to reap the maximum benefits by concentrating and mixing multiple academic functions within a confined site, aiming to enhance the sense of community and dynamics of interaction."
Chungking Mansion is another piece of architecture that is representative of Hong Kong, Yim says, pointing to its ability to exploit the use of volume and space through a diversified mix of programmes and functions. "At Chungking Mansion, however, this happened by accident rather than by design," he notes.

This is a preview of the "A place and its makers” article from the combined January/February Design issue of Perspective magazine.

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