Hillside development, Hsinchu, Taiwan, 2012-14

Mole has designed the masterplan for a new hillside village in Hsinchu in Taiwan  in partnership with Gianni Botsford Architects. A brief including a 250 room hotel, serviced apartments, villas, clinic and retail had to be accommodated on a hillside with a single access road. The design evolved from an analysis of topography, orientation, climate and observation of walled hilltop towns, common in China as well as southern Europe. Vernacular ‘hakka’ buildings were studied and a masterplan devised with all the buildings arranged around open courtyards. This promotes cross-ventilation and minimises the use of air-conditioning, as well as encouraging the use of outdoor communal space and a more direct experience of nature. Working with Arup (Hong Kong) and a local architect to deliver the project, this will be an environmental exemplar.