Equestrian Centre

LIU Sze Chit Cecilia
The Chinese University of Hong Kong, School of Architecture, Hong Kong
Hong Kong

Project idea

An Equestrian Centre in Cairns, Australia (16°47’32.37”s 145°36’47.56”e)

“To embrace nature, and so the friendship between human beings and horses.”

The concept is to embrace the outdoor environment of the rural area of Cairns in Australia. The dominant approach to this idea is the orientation and the shape, which capture the prevailing wind and create an outdoor zone in the centre.

Project description

The focus of the study is to analyze and design architecture with climatic response to the hot humid Cairns, in order to create an ideal environment for both human and horses. The other focus is to explore the possibility of creation of timber/steel structural framework. In this project, the structural exploration focuses on innovating diagrid/triangular pitched truss roof configurations, and connecting the configurations in different orientations in order to create a big continuous roof which makes the circulation under any weathers convenient and comfortable.

Technical information

The contour is modified to a more flat ground surface to create an accessible and generous environment. The ponds create an experience of the outdoor, cool down the surroundings and store rainwater for any use of the equestrian centre. And a higher roof is to adapt the contour and strengthen the cross ventilation as there is no roof ventilation.

To design the structural form, three architectural components (1) Truss, (2) Diagonal Element, (3) Pitched Roof are proposed to start with. With consideration of the dimension ratio and position of a circulation path, a section view is decided. Then the section view is tilted or projected to follow a top view diagonal pattern. By that means, the three components can be merged practically into a desire structural form.

Once the basic structural form is created, it is developed into three configurations that fit the three main programs of the equestrian centre: (1) Human Activities, (2) Indoor Arena (3) Stable. By further adjusting the spacing, orientation angle, etc. of the three developed distinct configurations, they are allowed to connect and create a seamless big roof. The central truss at the pitch of the roof highlights the consistency of the big roof.

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