Liangzi Island Off-island Pier / UAO Design

Architects: UAO Design
Area: 2290 m²
Year: 2023
Photographs: Yilong Zhao
Manufacturers: Hubei Yudian Glass Co., Ltd., Wuhan Changye Trading Co., Ltd., Zouping Zenwin Aluminum Technology Co.,
Lead Architects: Tao Li
City: Ezhou
Country: China

Liangzi Island Off-island Pier, designed by UAO Design, serves as a symbolic and functional gateway to Liangzi Island on Liangzi Lake in Ezhou, near Wuhan. The design emphasizes both the act of travel to and from the island and the creation of a meaningful, ceremonial space.

Liangzi island off-island pier / uao design

Liangzi Island is a small island on Liangzi Lake in Ezhou, not far from Wuhan. When the weather is rainy and foggy, visibility is low, giving the sensation of going to sea. During a wait for the return boat at dusk, the necessity of providing the island with a spiritual place symbolizing “going home” became apparent, adding a symbolic touch to the routine of traveling to and from the island. Words like “fisherman’s lights,” “lighthouse,” and “watching the sunset” were considered to anchor the project’s ceremonial aspect. However, these ideas sometimes overshadow the functional requirement of facilitating travel to and from the island.

The final design is simplified to a visitor center with waiting areas on both sides and a raised central structure. The tent-like structure becomes the most attractive architectural element. During the design stage, a circular glass skylight was incorporated into the parallelogram roof to introduce natural light to the entrances on both sides of the main building. The supporting columns, designed as pairs of small columns, weaken the sense of scale and present a lighter structural appearance.

The sequence of buildings is regulated by 3m oblique columns, and the landscape paving of the square also follows this 3m grid. The roof is covered with silver-gray aluminum-magnesium-manganese plates, customized to a 300mm width from the standard 330mm to fit the 3m module. The oblique columns are clad in aluminum alloy plates designed in an I-shape, with the double-row lines in the sun echoing the double-column lines under the canopy.

The visitor center, raised in the middle of the canopy, accommodates waiting and consumption functions during off-peak hours on the first floor. The second floor, with its towering space, takes on the symbolic meaning of a “lighthouse” on the water.

A horizontal ribbon window on the second floor aligns with the human eye level, limiting the view to the roof and lake while avoiding the cluttered architectural background of the island. The array of diagonal columns on both sides of the triangular space directs the line of sight to the lake, while skylights at both ends of the roof allow natural light to pour into the pure white space throughout the day. Outside, visitors can admire the vastness of the lake; inside, they can feel the profundity of the sky, enhancing the emotional experience of the island.

Liangzi island off-island pier / uao design
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Project Location

Address: Lianzi Lake, Ezhou, Hubei, China

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