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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

EPPF, Seoul, Korea

Connecting North and South Eunpyeong with a vibrant 24/7 hub
South Korea’s capital is undergoing a dramatic modern renovation under the instruction of Oh Se-hoon, Seoul's Mayor. With world renowned architect Daniel Libeskind taking the helm at the Seoul Design Olympiad as keynote speaker, Seoul is offering an exciting new architectural region for world-class architects to explore. The Olympiad, running from 10-30 October is showcasing Seoul’s architecture of the past, present and with an aim to reshape the city for the future. With its form, light and colour, DeStefano + Partners’ Eunpyeong Mixed-use Development (EPPF) demonstrates the vibrancy of architecture hoped for the city’s future.

EPPF will be located to the Northeast of Seoul, South Korea and will offer the surrounding residents 480,000 sq m of entertainment, shopping, home and office space. Eunpyeong is served by a vast subway network, surrounded by mountains on the east and west, the team behind the development Scott Sarver, Dae-Hong Minn and Hobum Lee wanted to connect the north and south of this development.

With an eight-story retail and entertainment multiplex at the heart of the development, the design is sculptural, with the bow shaped building appearing to drift across the landscape and at night the giant glass structure glows with a luminous exhibition of light. Attached to the discernable northwest corner is a 200 room hotel and 31 story pioneering office tower, with a twisting form inspired by traditional Korean pottery. At the southern point are three residential towers, ranging from 25 to 30 stories in height. A meandering stream entwines itself into the sculptural mould of the retail complex above, to fashion a dynamic space for this vibrant 24/7 transit hub.

With an extremely contemporary edge and reveling in traditional Korean culture, the development is a seamless fusion of old and new. The high regard for nature and significance of the mountains permeates the elaborate design, and in addition the buildings appearance is driven by old Korean styling. In contrast the luminous exhibition emanating from the multiplex is a direct reference to the colorful traditional festivals of the area.

Time-honoured customs combined with a twist of modern day chic give the project an awakening ambiance.

David Schiavone
architecture NOW

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