Prefectural International Hall
Location: Fukuoka, Japan
Client: Dai-ichi Seimei Insurance
Area: 1,000,000 sq ft
2000 Business Week / Architectural Record Award
2001 DuPont Benedictus Award
2001 Japan Institute of Architects Certificate of Environmental Architecture, First Prize
The city of Fukuoka, Japan, desperately needed a new government office building, yet the only available site was a two hectares public park in the center of town. When news emerged that this potential new structure would be located upon the last remaining green area in the city, the citizens of Fukuoka erupted in protest. Ambasz won this commission by successfully achieving a reconciliation between these two opposing desires: maintaining the original size of the park while providing the city of Fukuoka with a powerful symbolic structure at its center. His design utilizes a series of garden terraces stepping up the facade of the building, thereby giving back to Fukuoka's citizens virtually all of the land that the building would subtract from the city. The result was immediate community approval and the complete avoidance of any construction delays due to community challenges.