View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


The Kaohsiung Port Terminal may appear to belong to the universe of luxury cruise liners—think the webbed, almost skeletal superyacht that Zaha Hadid Architects has designed for shipbuilders Blohm+Voss—but this port is not part of that realm, at least not architecturally. A distinction must be made for the populism and urbanism that New York–based RUR Architecture evokes with the port’s plan. Sited laterally with respect to the city grid and positioned close to public transit, the terminal accommodates pedestrian traffic via a continuous, elevated public promenade that parallels the waterfront. The public programming for the project, which includes a conference hall as well as retail and office space, rises from the central plinth; there, these functions intersect laterally with the transit and service-center operations of the terminal. “There’s an interesting relationship that this building has as an object that is relatively separated from the ground,” juror Marcelo Spina said. “I like that aspect of it, the idea that there is some kind of independence.”

View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

View of the Kaohsiung Port Terminal model.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Urban flow diagrams.

Urban flow diagrams.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Interior rendering.

Interior rendering.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Interior rendering.

Interior rendering.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Interior rendering of departure level.

Interior rendering of departure level.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Interior rendering - typical office.

Interior rendering - typical office.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture



View of the model from the southwest, showing the infrastructure for cruise ship boarding.

View of the model from the southwest, showing the infrastructure for cruise ship boarding.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture

Structural diagrams.

Structural diagrams.

Credit: Courtesy RUR Architecture


Project Credits

Project Kaohsiung Port Terminal, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, Republic of China
Client Port of Kaohsiung, Taiwan International Ports Corp., Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Architect RUR Architecture, New York—Jesse Reiser, AIA, Nanako Umemoto (principals); Neil Cook, Michael Overby, Kris Hedges, Eleftheria Xanthouli, Juan DeMarco, Massimiliano Orzi, John Murphey (design team); Toshiki Hirano, Sonya Chao, Imaeda Ryosuke (interns and assistants); Neil Cook, Michael Overby, Kris Hedges, Juan DeMarco, Devin Jernigan, Michal Golinski, Assoc. AIA, Leigh Jester, Libby Dierker, Sonya Chao, Ana Untiveros-Ferrel, Erin Kelly, Robert Cha, Alan Kwan (competition team)
Architect of Record Fei and Cheng and Associates, Taipei
Structural Engineer Supertek, Ysrael A. Seinuk
Port Planning and Logistics Arup
Façade Consultant Meinhardt Facade Technology
Lighting Consultant Fomolux, Izumi Okayasu; Lighting Design Office
M/E/P and Sustainability Engineer Arup, I.S.Leng, Mininger
Landscape Consultant Environmental Arts Design
Size 38,000 square meters (417,000 square feet)

See all of the other Progressive Architecture winners here.