Exterior view of Dotsss Children’s Museum with its geometric box-like design against the Luhu Eco-City backdrop.

Dotsss Children’s Museum showcases free-flowing spaces for kids’ exploration

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Dotsss Children’s Museum exterior showcasing its unique box-like architecture designed by DL Atelier in Luhu Eco-City, Chengdu.

Dotsss Children’s Museum, designed by DL Atelier, opened in October 2023. It is located northwest of Luhu Eco-City, across the road from the Lufang Center. The land around the site revolves around sports and leisure. The sports park includes a sports center, a camping experience area, and a commercial district.

Dotsss Children’s Museum serves children, using space and exhibits to show children the diversity of the world and actively attracting these young audiences to explore and think in their own way. Based on the experience of designing cultural exhibition buildings, the exhibition hall’s size, spatial form, and other related design elements are usually determined based on the actual exhibits and exhibition forms. However, in this design, just like the uncertain site environment, the exhibition content is also temporarily unknown during the short construction period.

Translucent tensile membrane roof of Dotsss Children’s Museum, creating a semi-open activity space for children on the roof.

“We want to create a free-flowing way of visiting for children; that is, we try not to limit the fixed visiting flow line.”

Dotsss Children’s Museum is designed as a collection of boxes that are open to each other and connected through the atrium and outdoor courtyard. It is surrounded by activity venues of different sizes, making the visiting flow very casual. The cubes are only arranged to follow the site’s contours. The fifth elevation of the building becomes crucial to understanding how the structure breaks through the blandness around it. From the high-rise structures surrounding the site, it is possible that the planned relationship of the cubes would seem more intuitive.

Close-up of the museum entrance, featuring the innovative design by Liu Yang and the team at DL Atelier.

The translucent tensile membrane fully expresses the geometric aesthetics of the iceberg through the changes in the stacked blocks under different viewing angles and lighting conditions. With the tension between pulling, this huge soft fabric connects multiple blocks, hides the outward-moving equipment, and softens the box’s boundaries from sharp and hard clarity to shadowy unknown.

The mezzanine formed between the tensile membrane roof and the block is a semi-open activity space we prepared for children on the roof. We plan to use it to fulfill the childhood wishes of every child who tries to climb onto the roof.

Aerial view of Dotsss Children’s Museum, emphasizing its integration with surrounding sports and leisure areas in Luhu Eco-City.

Project Info

Location: Chengdu, Sichuan, China
Year: 2021-2023
Area: 5736sqm
Client: Chengdu Wanhua Group
Architectural Plan/Expansion: Daliao Architecture
Principal Architect: Liu Yang
Architects: Sun Xinye, Cai Zhuoqun, Ding Yuewen, Shi Weiwei, Duan
Construction Drawing: Sichuan Xilian Architectural Planning and Design Co., Ltd.
Interior Design: MOD Moshe Design
Landscape Design: Zhilan Landscape
Lighting Design: bpi Lighting Consultant Design Company
Curtain Wall Detailed Design: First Architecture Technology Co., Ltd.
Guide Design: Prism Design Office
Photography: Zhu Yumeng

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