A former coal-burning power plant has been reimagined into a fitness centre and recreational gym by 2020 Designer Indaba speaker, Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang. The award-winning project was commissioned by Beloit College in Wisconsin, USA.
The aptly named Powerhouse is situated on Beloit’s Rock River waterfront and focuses on recreation, fitness and wellness.
“Reimagining a hundred-year-old structure and former coal-burning plant presents significant challenges, especially to efficient energy use. Heating and cooling the spaces of the Powerhouse, for example, requires addressing heat flow through the building skin—inward in the summer and outward in the winter—as well as the removal of heat generated by people, lights, and equipment.”
Gang’s work focuses on how to make cities more livable. During her talk at the 2020 Conference, Gang revealed what she thinks about where architecture is headed.
“Architecture is not just a finished product or a standalone object,” she said. “We think about it more as a process for connecting people to their environment.” The days of constructing buildings for their own sake is long over.”