#EDEarthHero: A bamboo retreat in Vietnam

APR 7, 2016 | By Tasneem Merchant
Bamboo is the primary material that has been bent into various shapes to provide the framework of the pavilions. The pavilions have been inspired by the baskets used by native farmers to trap fowl. The weaves inside the larger pavilions form a mesmerising pattern.
When it comes to constructing green buildings, Vietnamese firm Vo Trong Nghia Architects lead by example. A shining illustration of this is their Diamond Island Community Centre situated on an artificial islet off the Saigon river.
Its eight pavilions combine cultural practices with contemporary architecture and also provide Ho Chi Minh City’s inhabitants a complex for conferences, meetings, childrens’ activities, parties and even a place to eat out. Two of the largest domes represent baskets used by local farmers to trap fowls and were constructed on site by skilled artisans.
The double layered thatched roof, resting on a network of interwoven bamboo of various lengths, protects the entire framework from harsh sunlight and heavy rain. Six smaller structures resembling umbrellas were pre-manufactured as individual units and assembled at the location.
All shelters have a round skylight, eliminating the need for artificial lighting and allowing hot air to escape from the top, thus keeping them well ventilated. Completed just last year and accessible by boat, this recreational setup also serves as a tourist attraction.
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