The Conflict over Building Lines
: Eminent Domain and the Bureaucratic Solution
Wall planes extend beyond the building line
, sheltering a small terrace and channelling visitors to the main entrance on the lower level.
The face of the building, glazed below and clad in a swath of silvery titanium above, is canted over the courtyard and broken at the upper level by projecting aluminum-clad cube, set squarely within the ellipse but aslant the building line
(you register the asymmetry subliminally).
The roof plane extends beyond the building line
to shade and protect the intermediate veranda spaces.
Set askew the building line
, the glowing plane of the wall turns right-angled to form the inner converging wall of a short corridor, compression seeming to shoot you into the great expanse of the kitchen.
The precise north-south orientation of the concrete core accords with the rationalist grid of the polytechnic campus, but the territory west of the tower follows the building line
against the main road, which is skewed some 23.5 degrees anti-clockwise of east-west.
The pattern of marker lights relates to an earlier building line
, and where an early twentieth-century building intruded across what was formerly part of the square, stainless steel reflecting panels have been applied at ground level to make the grid appear to continue underneath the building, to show the ghost of the square that was.
The facade which faces the plass has been drawn back a little from the original building line
to allow the building's symmetrical presence to be appreciated.