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Five Uses of Bamboo In Temporary Architecture

The rising popularity of Bamboo sees the lightweight, low cost and abundant traditional Chinese material used in transient spaces over recent years.

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BY Stephanie Peh

May 15th, 2015


Top Photo: West Kowloon Bamboo Theatre. Photo: CL3

1. One With The Birds Hotel

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One With The Birds by Penda, 2014. Photo: Penda

A temporary residence in the woods, One with the Woods was built by Penda using the strong flooring support of bamboo joints shaped in an ‘X’, inspired by the flexible system of Native American’s teepees. The residence expands horizontally and vertically easily, where the bamboo material fits seamlessly within nature. When dismantled, it leaves no impact on site, nor harm on the bamboo, which can be repurposed.

2. China Pavillion 

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China Pavilion for Expo Milano 2015 by Studio Link-Arc and Tsinghua University. Photo: Sergio Grazia

Studio Link- Arc and Tsinghua University designed the China Pavilion for Milan Expo 2015 with an undulating roof structure cladded with 1052 woven bamboo panels, depicting the traditional Chinese building material in new perspective. Watch this space for a full story on the Pavilion.

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China Pavilion for Expo Milano 2015 by Studio Link-Arc and Tsinghua University. Photo: Sergio Grazia

3. Lantern Wonderland

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Lantern Wonderland by William Lim, 2011. Photo: CL3

To celebrate the 2011 Mid-Autumn Festival, William Lim of CL3 created a monumental installation titled Lantern Wonderland. The structure had to be constructed within 12 days and deconstructed within three, which made bamboo the only viable material. At a massive scale of 8650 square metres, or the size of a soccer field, the fish shaped – a symbol for prosperity and abundance – construction at Victoria Park was created using approximately 2000 bamboos weaved into a cage structure holding 2360 Chinese lanterns. The entire structure was held using wires and plastic cords – not a single nail was employed.

4. West Kowloon Bamboo Theatre

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West Kowloon Bamboo Theatre. Photo: CL3

For Chinese New Year celebrations in 2013, Lim designed the West Kowloon Bamboo Theatre, reminiscent of traditional bamboo theaters in the 50s, to host Cantonese opera performances which took place over 2 weeks.

5. Transitional Micro-Housing

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Transitional Micro-housing by Affect-T. Photo: Affect-T

For the 280,000 residents living without permanent residence in Hong Kong, Affect-T conceived an inexpensive, sustainable and easily assembled micro-housing using bamboo to provide temporary housing for singles and families in search of permanent housing.