Special Mention
2007 Skyscraper Competition

Ming Tang, Dihua Yang
United States


Inspired by the Lego blocks, the strategy of Geno-Matrix is to do as much pre-fabrication as possible, under controlled factory conditions. Within a modular building system, large quantity of cubic units are fabricated and assembled into a lattice system. These units can be “pulled”, “pushed” or “combined” in the lattice grid along the axis and form infinite typological features. The characteristic of the skyscraper heavily relies on these units’ location and the internal logic between them. The skyscraper is formed by the same building “blocks” that takes on an organization imposed by the social, economic, and culture requirements of the site.

While molecularization allows for units’ assembly from the bottom-up, the linear hierarchy is replaced by more complex network. In our project, we are investigating the relationships between the units. Occupation, habitation, lifestyle, need, and economy are reflected in this skin. For instance, grid like pattern repeats the grid of the streets, and small-scale living units can be combined to form large-scale commercial units. Overlapping multiple patterns form the potential mixed-use zones, which can be continuously configured based on the changing spatial requirements over the years.

By changing local relationships of individual units, Geno-Matrix can affect an emotional response, similar to that realized by the culture icon or national symbol, though on a much larger scale. For instance, to reflect the social value, an ordinary “tree” pattern can be generated by moving the units along the normal axis. Organization patterns emerge at varying scale and hierarchy.

Since Charles Darwin proposed his theory stating that all species are generated via the process of evolution, and genetic approach is now considered not only powerful enough to solve biological puzzles, but also useful in the simulation of creating algorithms and 3D graphics for higher level of complexity and diversity. Within the evolution hierarchy all individual features are condensed and passed to the next generation. Here, variations can simply take place by changing the crossover rule in hierarchy, or introducing a new genotype into the system. With GE, designers could yield novel, creative design solutions based on the mixture of several existing successful cases.

Geno-Matrix Board 1
Geno-Matrix Board 2

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution.

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