DESIGN TEAM : ARUP ASSOCIATES SINGAPORE, LANGDON & SEAH, CAMIEL WEIJENBERG, QUENTIN SIM, HILDE HAVERCAMP, VANESSA CHUNG, SHARON GUZMAN
VISUALS : MARK SUMMERFIELD
Busan is a rapidly developing, future proof city taking its place on the international stage by hosting some of the world’s largest events; the football World Cup 2012 and future plans for the winter Olympics 2018.
Our design approach in collaboration with Arup and Langdon Seah brought together several ideas to make the tower extension an international landmark matching the city of Busan’s ambition yet protecting its past. The original tower observatory is based on one of the main Pagodas in Korea, the Dabotap Pagoda of Bulguksa Temple. The challenge became clear that the tower should be extended in a respectable manner, not removing the crown, neither obscuring it from the city with a larger structure, its history to be embraced and celebrated for the future.
By studying typical traditional Korean clothing and how it emphasizes the wearer and white collar, we translated this into a continuous ribbon running around the base, the park, up and around the tower and coming back down again. As the white collar can be found in both men’s and women’s traditional garments, choosing this design removed any focus on gender, creating a neutral and elegant construct that studied the future of the people of Busan. The tower is designed to overlook the harbor and the city, connecting its past with the future.