Workshop First Assignment

Impromptu Experiment Valby Gasometer

Workshop Behaving Structure Assignment.pdf

View to the top of the Oberhasuen Gasometer

View to the top of the Oberhasuen Gasometer


A massive 105m high Gasometer in the south of Copenhagen has gone out of use; its importance as an industrial age monument and its landmark character for the whole of Copenhagen’s south make a further use important. The first task is to develop a concept for the monument conducted in an impromptu style. The groups are asked to think of the existing structures, morphological and structural changes due to the reuse, as well as urban and climatic requirements. Parametric systems and behavioral strategies will help to solve the tasks conflicting specifications.


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A first presentation on Friday shall include a basic setup, which will be refined until the first day of the workshop. This presentation should discuss in a diagrammatic way the general setup and concept of the building
•    The considered key parameters to the site
•    Overall (parametric) concept
•    the programmatic setup the internal spatial setup, taking the enormous verticality into account
•    the relation of interior structure and skin
•    the urban setup, linking local and long distance, influences and effects
•    climatic and ventilation issues
•    internal infrastructure
•    lighting of the interior

Presentation Format

The presentation should be done in A3 format. Herein each page should concentrate on one of the developed ideas or answers to the posed questions in a straight forward way. The presenta-tion should be uploaded to the workshop blog in pdf format and pinned up for Monday morning on A3.


An easy to understand illustrated analysis of Site and Program can be found here.

Thoughts on the Gasometer

The gasometer exemplifies a parametrically formed behavioral structure.

•    A flexible container expanding vertically as gas volumes fluctuate.
•    Skin & Structure are one system relying on geometry, material strength, efficiency and the void of space to resolve the economics of storage.
•    The industrial revolution billboard.

Deconstructing terms to argue design strategies and procedurally resolve the task:

Parametric formations result from constrained actions between elements and forces. For instance as water (molecule composed of hydrogen & oxygen elements) undergoes pressure (force) changes (parametric constraint) we witness behavioral and structural transformations between solid, liquid and gaseous states and eventually fragmentation into elemental components; these can be broken down into smaller components: electrons, protons, neutrons etc.

This leads us to scales; forces change with scale, forces tend to grow stronger at smaller scales. The following short film Powers of Ten by Charles and Ray Eames admirably simplifies the complexity of scale by introducing a frame of reference: a square of a known unit of measure and an object capable of traveling the distance of one side of the square in a fixed amount of time (in this case ten seconds). Scale may be referred to as spatial structuring and/or referencing.

The following short video may hint at radical explorations into Parametric Formation and Behavioral Structure systems. It combines forces, elements/material properties, behaviors and structures to challenge spatial concepts.

This suggest thinking outside of the box, while carefully exploring parameters & combining: forces, elements, structures, and materials to transcend new meaning for the gasometer site, its local and broader communities.

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