Press Release from NBBJ
BUCHEON, South Korea/LOS ANGELES -- April 14, 2009 -- In a step toward global recognition of Korea's established animation industry, the City of Bucheon is building the new Korean Animation Museum, currently under construction in South Korea. Designed by the Los Angeles office of international design firm NBBJ, the two-building complex, which includes the first museum dedicated to animation in Korea, will house a library, auditorium, dining halls, restaurants, clubs, offices and a museum. The US$60 million property is on schedule to be completed in mid-2009.
In order to make the development inviting to tourists and community members alike, NBBJ utilized the space between the two buildings to create a civic area that will become a focal point of Bucheon, near Incheon. The public area slopes alongside the site's natural contours, creating an amphitheatre for large-scale public gatherings and embracing the city motto "Fantasia Bucheon."
The Korean Animation Museum along with the office building for the Korean animation industry were designed as two complementary buildings, which use similar, but opposing shapes and exterior materials to create a dynamic atmosphere and balance between the structures. A bridge spans across the buildings, creating an internal link that encourages visitor interactions between the museum and the industry offices. As a whole, the complex's form and high-end materials, such as stone exterior skin, visually complement the adjacent park, subway and sports arena.
"Though the buildings are formally separate, they are knitted together into a single composition, which highlights the energy and excitement of Korea's well established animation industry," said Robert Mankin, AIA, Principal in Charge for NBBJ.
The office component of the plaza comprises a series of simple loft-style, open-plan work-spaces organized along a single support backbone for maximum flexibility. The building's exterior tapers upwards alongside the museum, creating rooftop terraces. These terraces allow the office building occupants to engage with the neighboring park and scenery.
NBBJ's project team was managed by Mankin, AIA, with internal design support from Nnamdi Ugenyi, Paul Q. Davis, Kiki Wang, and Young-im Kim. Hyundai Construction is leading the development effort, while local architects involved with the project include Gansam Partners and Mooyoung Architects & Engineers.
NBBJ is a leading international architecture and design firm with project work spanning various markets and countries. As one of the LA BUSINESS JOURNAL's "2008 Best Places to Work", the firm's Los Angeles office is the sixth largest in the region and has designed some of the world's most progressive corporate, civic, science and entertainment facilities, including the CALIT2 Headquarters at UCSD, the LA Staples Center and Samsan Sports Zone in Incheon, Korea. NBBJ has additional offices in Beijing, Columbus, Dubai, London, Moscow, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and Shanghai. More information is available at www.nbbj.com