concrete lace
hanoi, vietnam
type of commission
fpt software company
27'000 m2 of offices
under construction
project team
manuel der hagopian, grégoire du pasquier, vu hoang ha, duong bao trung, duong quoc anh, pham kien, nguyen dinh tu, vu hung thanh
project date
commission 2014, completion 2016
patrick bingham-hall

Growing mysteriously from the ground numerous concrete columns move rhythmically, branching and wrapping four levels of the courtyard building. In its current construction phase, Concrete Lace is illuminated by the soft golden light of the setting sun and becomes a part of the skyline. Evening light shines through, interweaving between the concrete skeleton and the skyline.

With construction cranes above, the ground swarms with busy men in hard hats and steel lined boots. This hive of activity were bulldozers, cement mixers and building materials thrive, creates an energy that encapsulates the relationship between man and structure.

This curious building is part of Village 3 in the High-Tech Park master plan. Inspired by local traditional North Vietnamese village features, the exposed courtyard radiates four pathways; connecting to the lush external landscape and acting as four entrances that reminisce the main gates of a traditional village.

The grid structure of 12x25 meters allows a highly flexible and efficient use of space. Mixing green areas and open spaces they enhance the user’s experience through the building; inviting them to exchange, relax and enjoy the landscape.

Sustainable design is ubiquitous; through maximising natural light, natural ventilation, gardens inside offices, sky gardens, rain water recycling and the simple use of local eco-friendly materials.

The external layer also acts as a key sustainable element of the building. It integrates climbing trees, acting as green protection against the sun, its density and thickness has been carefully adapted from different orientations and facade exposure. Together these elements create a dynamic green building that is integrated in nature and connected with its environment.

Traditionally when a building was in a state of “ruin”, often the aftermath of abandonment and neglect, it became an inconvenience of sorts and disregarded. The very notion that a building has gone past its “expiry date” is truly archaic and in conflict with the fundamentals of “sustainability”.

Here, the “sustainable ruin” looks beyond aesthetics and dives into a holistic approach, becoming inherent in the lifespan of a building that can have adaptable future uses. This very intriguing idea has been bought to life by international Swiss architectural design practice group8asia, has been captured by photographer Patrick Bingham-Hall. His images in this series explore harmony between structure, nature and construction.