The Hong Kong Polytechnic University – known as PolyU – has appointed Zaha Hadid as the architect of its new Innovation Tower, which will house the School of Design and support the development of specialisms in the sector.
According to Victor Lo Chung-wing, chairman of PolyU Council, the Innovation Tower will serve as a driving force for the development of Hong Kong as a design hub in Asia. It will also provide additional space to facilitate interdisciplinary research and education in the field of design.
The new tower will be located in the north-eastern tip of the university campus, and construction will begin in 2009, with completion of the project expected by the end of 2011.
Upon completion, the tower will provide 12 000m2 of floor area and it will be able to accommodate around 1800 staff and students.
Disciplines to be developed at the school are: environmental design, industrial and product design, visual communication, advertising and digital design.
Facilities will include teaching and learning spaces, public-orientated spaces and support spaces.
As part of the selection for the design of the building, a ten-member panel assessed 48 local and international architects and shortlisted five candidates to submit their proposals.