Renowned architect to design PolyU's 'innovation tower'
In 2011, Polytechnic University will have a HK$400 million purpose-built 'innovation tower'.
The university has appointed world-renowned architect Zaha Hadid to steer design of the 10-storey project, with construction scheduled to begin in 2009.
Alexander Tzang Hing-chung, deputy president of the university, said about HK$400 million was expected to be spent on the project.
'The building is largely financed by the government,' Mr Tzang said. 'We might spend more than that as the building costs might increase during the construction in the coming few years.'
He said it would house the university's school of design and a museum to showcase local and international design classics.
The Iraqi-born Ms Hadid is the first female recipient of the Pritzker Architecture prize, which is known in architectural circles as the equivalent of the Nobel Prize. The innovation tower marks her first design project in Hong Kong. It would be made up of two adjacent buildings, which would be connected.
'We will have escalators throughout the space [inside the building],' she said. 'We hope to have an interesting central space [where] people can meet and talk.'
From the entrance foyer, a long escalator will penetrate through four levels of transparent studios and workshops.
Mr Tzang said the new tower would look different from different angles.
Victor Lo Chung-wing, chairman of the Polytechnic University council, said the new building would not serve just as the design school but would also be a meeting place for all the disciplines studied at the university.
'The innovation tower is going to be an interesting tower, not only in the school, but also in the whole of the Tsim Sha Tsui area,' Mr Lo said.