Ecorium of the National Ecological Institute by S.A.M.O.O.

© Young Chae Park

Ecorium of the National Ecological Institute by S.A.M.O.O.

International firm S.A.M.O.O. have completed the Ecorium of the National Ecological Institute in Korea. The vertiable ecoplex is part of a government-led initiative to preserve the existing environment of the region and create a didcatic and research hub. While the original site was slated to become an industrial zone, a collaboration between S.A.M.O.O and Grimshaw Architects led to the development of five sweeping greenhouses that highlight various climactic zones. Curved pathways link round shells that house examples of tropical to polar regions.

© Young Chae Park

The composition of sinuous of mega-structures is supported by myriad ancillary facilities; a grand lobby leads to theaters, cafeterias, and gift shops as well as a observatory deck installed on the main greenhouse. Vsitors will enjoy both panoramic views and a full sensory experience of rain forests, waterfalls, miniature mountains and even sub-zero temperatures.

© Young Chae Park

Planned as an eco-friendly building, the Ecorium is strategically designed to become a leading facility in regards to sustainability. The idea of creating a sustainable facility was at the heart of the project and this was realized through multiple simulations that were engineered to reduce energy consumptions and carbon footprints. For example, the alignment and the orientation of the various greenhouses were simulated to create an ideal environment depending on the climate zone the space would represent. Also, air-flow simulations were carried out so that natural ventilation effects could be maintained throughout the 4-seasons for necessary facilities. The sloped curtain-wall of each climate zones would gather rain-water for cooling & watering plants. With these various efforts, the whole facility was able reduce total energy consumption by approximately 10%.

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