Wind Generated Architecture

August 2010: In golf, a ‘shaper’ is someone who transforms the existing earth into fairways and greens.  The best shapers are experts who can understand nuances in physical form, materials and environmental conditions in order to create challenging and ultimately rewarding golf courses for its players.

Architectkidd approached the design of a new golf clubhouse not unlike how ‘shapers’ work on golf courses.  The site is located in Chonburi province, nearby many of Thailand’s well known golf courses. The design was a unique opportunity to re-envision contemporary golf clubhouse architecture in Thailand.

Wind and user movement shaped the design of the clubhouse building. With enough surrounding open space to generate wind speeds to naturally ventilate many of the interior public areas, our design objective was to generate a building form that can regulate wind flows to a level that is comfortable for its users.

In contrast to typical clubhouses that have front and back sides, Architectkidd’s design is omni-directional in its orientation. This is based on the observation that golfers approach the clubhouse from various directions and perspectives during their time spent at the golf course.

They may first enter the clubhouse premises by car or by foot. After completing the 9th hole, they may return to take a rest. Finally, the clubhouse establishes a visual presence on the final 18th hole as well as being in close proximity to it. Architectkidd’s design responds to these criteria to result in a shape that is multi-faceted, but also understandable as an overall coherent form.

Three collaborators played an important role in the design outcome. The first was Smith Obayawat, principal of OBA and leading designer of numerous golf facilities, shared with us his expertise and advice on golf architecture.  The second was Pattaranan Takkanon and her team at Ecowill, who was instrumental towards both the architectural design as well as the technical implementation for wind analysis and simulation. Finally, Chanawit Anukkul and his construction team at Thai Obayashi facilitated discussions and provided the necessary resources to undertake the applied research and design development.

Although this project was finally not implemented in construction, Architectkidd intends to apply the techniques gained to develop more ‘wind-generated’ architectures on forthcoming building projects.

Project Summary:

Project Name:  Greenwood Golf Club
Function:  Golf Clubhouse, Hotel and support facilities
Scope:  Architectural Design
Building area:  Clubhouse: 3,700 square meters; Hotel: 4,000 sqm; Support: 1,900 sqm; Parking: 100 cars
Project team:  Jariyawadee Lekawatana, Udomsak Komonvilas, Luke Yeung, Phuttipan Aswakool, Vichayuth Meenaphant, Manassak Senachak, Tammarat Rodpul
Specialists:  Smith Obayawat, Pattaranan Takkanon, Khatiya Chatpetch
Contractor:  Thai Obayashi Corporation
Location:  Chonburi, Thailand
Project time: 2009