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Taipei invites architects to pop music center design contest

Taipei City Government said Thursday it would invite renowned architects from here and abroad to join a competition to design the island's first pop music center in the city's southeastern Nangang District that would serve as a venue to foster a vibrant music industry for Taiwan.

The 7.65-hectare Taipei Pop Music Center will be built near the MRT Kunyang Station. It will house a main stadium with capacity seats between 4,500 and 6,000, an outdoor performing plaza that accommodates 15,000 people, a hall of fame, a digital library, live houses for performances by independent bands, and display rooms and offices for different functions.

"This is a difficult design case for architects," said Lee Yong-ping, commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs, Taipei City Government, at a press conference held Thursday.
"Architects have to equip themselves with the knowledge of the local community and the local music scene, and I do not think international architects enjoy advantages in designing this project,” Lee added.
Hoping the music center would help foster an environment conducive to creating musical productions, Lee noted that the Taipei Pop Music Center is scheduled to start construction in 2012 and open to the public by 2014; it will allow concerts and musicals to be held regularly. 

According to the department, the construction budget of the center is set at around NT$3.5 billion (including a NT$380 million designer’s fee). Architects who are interested in joining the contest have to submit their proposals before October 19. The 7-people jury led by Lars Lerup, dean of the Rice School of Architecture, Houston Texas, will select three finalists and four Superb Design teams on October 23. The four teams will be given NT$660,000 prize award, while the three finalists will be given NT$1.65 million each. The final result of the competition will be made public on January 29 next year.

Architect Chang Chu, who attended Thursday's press conference, said he hoped that architects could present the distinctive atmosphere of Taipei City when designing the center.
More detailed information about the competition can be found through the web link www.tpmc.com.tw or call (02)2720-8889 #3529