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Spice Factory

Part 2 Project 2013
Wearn Hong Chua
Mackintosh School of Architecture Glasgow UK
Hamburg’s historical warehouse district exhibits Speicherstadt’s momentous cultural legacy. This ‘city of warehouses’ was a hotbed for cultural integration. Because it was a free zone, goods can be transferred without paying customs. However, the repercussions of the port drove merchants to relocate their Speicherstadt’s storage due to legality and efficiency. The success of the port indirectly increased Hamburg’s social segregation.

The project exploits spices as metaphors to resurrect Speicherstadt’s bygone era, promulgate global multiculturalism, and demonstrate Hamburg’s trading and cultural lineage. The process of spices from cradle to grave (growing, harvesting, shipping, storing, processing, supplying, cooking, feasting, socializing, and celebrating) is infused to provide a cultural narrative and to provoke a sensory experience. The austere warehouses are perceived as a dead ‘solid’ block and spices are weaved throughout the site as ‘void’ to reignite the spirit of Speicherstadt. New additions are integrated with the existing warehouses by creating a monumental skyline, wrapping the site and bringing alive a lost public route from the old town to new park.

The scheme speculates the potential future of Speicherstadt by functioning as a hub for both the local and wider cultural communities, contributing to the vitality of Hamburg and beyond.

Wearn Hong Chua


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