Tsung-Dao Lee Research Institute

Research Institute, Multi-Use
Invited Competion (3rd Prize)
Pudong District, Shanghai, China

Tsung-Dao Lee Research Institute is a scientific research institution established with the joint support of the national development and reform commission, the Ministry of finance, the Ministry of education, the Ministry of science and technology, the national natural science foundation Committee and the Shanghai municipal government on the proposal of the famous Chinese physicist and nobel prize winner Tsung-Dao Lee.

When completed, Lee Institute will be the world’s top academic institution in physics, astronomy and its interdisciplinary fields. The top scientists at home and abroad will gather here to study major basic science issues. under their influence, Lee Institute will also become the top academic exchange platform in the world, and will also serve as an important science popularization base open to the whole society.

Before start the architectural design of such a high-standard research institution, we have studied a series of outstanding research institution buildings in the world, investigated and analyzed their planning and organization principles, functional streamline and spatial processing methods, summed up all aspects worthy of learning and reference, and applied them into the design of Lee Institute. In many excellent cases, there is one thing in common, especially to give us a lot of inspiration: in today’s highly refined and professional branches of the academic world, the exchanges between the professional communication, mutual inspiration becomes particularly important. As the place and background of academic research, how to create a relaxed and pleasant communication environment, let people gather together, brainstorm, create more brilliant academic achievements, is the key to the success of the design. Therefore, in the design of Lee Institute, we create the communication space with different scales and open degrees inside and outside the building, combine them with the laboratory and the research work place, create an organic space layout in a clear logical framework, and provide a platform for more dynamic academic activities.

At the same time, we also try to find the spiritual connection between the building and its users. Mr Lee, who won the nobel prize in physics in 1957 with Mr Chen-Ning Franklin Yang, will continue his cutting-edge research in the fields he has dedicated his life to: physics, astronomy and a range of cross-cutting disciplines. We note that throughout his life, Mr Lee was fascinated by the concept of symmetry. The discovery of parity non-conservation under weak action brings him the honor of nobel prize, and is also Mr Lee’s exploration of the meaning and possibility of symmetry, the core concept in modern physics. Symmetry appears in every detail of nature, in literature and art, and is also an important concept in architecture. In the design, we discuss the tension and possibility between symmetry as an abstract concept and concrete expression through the rotation, layering and movement of architectural form, and convey the beauty of harmony expressed in the micro and macro world invisible to the naked eye at the level of human perception through the comparison between rich details, changes, randomness and the integrity and balance of the overall image.