Dongdaemun Design Plaza

The Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) was designed by world-renowned British Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, winner of the 2004 Pritzker Prize, with the concept of “Metonymic Landscape.” Metonymy refers to a method of describing a specific object indirectly and, Hadid integrated historical, cultural, urban, social, and economic aspects of Seoul deduced from this method in order to create a scene of landscape.

Designed as a cultural hub in the historical district of Seoul as well as Korea’s largest fashion district, the DDP is composed of undulating surfaces that resemble the flow of liquid and allow the flexibility in space. The state-of-the-art BIM (Building Information Modeling), mega-truss (extra-large roof truss) system, and space frame system are the key features in terms of creating grand-scale spaces. According to Hadid, the fundamental features of her design were “transparency, porousness, and durability.”[2] Many ecological features, double-skin facade, solar panels, and recycling water system are included in the building.

The construction project for replacing Dongdaemun Stadium with a public park had been discussed since 2000 in the media, and the city of Seoul established a basic master plan for alternating the function of Dongdaemun Stadium in 2005. Upon the advice of architects, and in order to secure a high-quality design for the new landmark of Seoul, the city invited architects in February 2007 to participate in a design competition. As the guidelines, the city requested the architects to include a design plaza, underground spaces, and a history and culture park for the project. Zaha Hadid’s Metonymic Landscape won the competition.[3]

The exterior envelope of the DDP, a smooth and giant mushroom-like structure floating above ground level, is made of concrete, aluminium, steel, and stone. The interior of building is finished with plaster reinforced with synthetic fiber, acoustic tiles, acrylic resin, and stainless steel and polished stone in the interior

From Dongdaemun Design Plaza