September 28, 2015
in connexion with the exhibition Building in Context
Javier Villar Ruiz
architect, Kengo Kuma & Associates, Tokyo
Under One Roof, design and construction
Almost 4 years have passed since the initial kick-off of the competition for the redevelopment of EPFL’s central plaza, known as Place Cosandey -a competition that focused on the design of pavilion-like spaces dedicated to interactions between culture and technology. Kengo Kuma and Associates won the competition with the Under One Roof project, which is currently being constructed at a very fast pace at the heart of the EPFL campus.
From its initial conception to the current incarnation being built, the project has naturally evolved in many directions, some of them even contradictory, leaving behind many architectural stories to be told. With the project now a soon-to-be completed reality, it is a good time to look back and see how the essential aims and ideas of the initial project are still alive and capable of transforming one’s experience of campus.
Javier Villar Ruiz
First working with experimental architecture office Cloud 9 in his hometown, Barcelona, Javier Villar Ruiz has lived and worked in Tokyo since 2004. As a Partner and Design Chief at Kengo Kuma & Associates (KKAA), he has taken part in projects and international competitions in Japan, China, South-East Asia, Europe and the Americas. Heading KKAA’s win in the competition for the development of cultural pavilions on EPFL’s Place Cosandey, Javier has developed the awarded project – known as Under One Roof – since 2012, and accompanies its construction until its planned completion in 2017. Other projects he is currently involved in are the Muskkat Museum (Philippines), the Susa International Train Station (Italy), Shanghai’s Shipyard 1862 Factory renovation (China), Busan City Marina complex (South Korea).