Our website has detected that you are using an outdated browser than will prevent you from accessing certain features. We recommend that you update your browser, simply click one of the following to download a new browser:

Skip to content Skip to navigation

A Home for Heart and Hope - City and Country

The dichotomous representations of Hong Kong reveals the vast differences between the man-made and nature, and its relationship with people and their mentality.

The towering landscapes scattered across the forested tropics provide a vivid representation of the densified masses inhabiting its every corner and corridor. Incandescent in the night sky, and effervescent is its people, Hong Kong is imagined and aspired as a beacon of individual freedom and unlimited possibilities.

The city also sits within the mountainous forests rising from the coastal island-scape, and features sub-tropical humidities across its topography. Its protected landscape includes wetlands, nature reserves, and mountains adjacent to one of the densest city centres in the world, and this unique dichotomy inspires a dynamic relationship between humanity and nature.

A Home for Heart and Hope - Tin Shui Wai Collages

Bordering the marshy wetlands of Mai Po Reserve, Tin Shui Wai is truly at the edge of Hong Kong. To many in the mainland, TSW is the frontier of possibility, the land of freedom and opportunity for a new beginning. Its idyllic landscape stretches across the undulating fish ponds and mangrove thickets, which borders the new town in its entirety. Its history of farming aquaculture and agriculture has roots in the indigenous lives that lived in Hong Kong before British colonisation, and is still pictured in natural beauty amongst the towering background.

I was inspired by this New Town, first by its unique geography, then surprised and intrigued by its underlying multifaceted stories behind its existence. The fishponds and marshland were previously not known to me, because of its isolated nature apart from the country, and its urban irrelevance to the city centre.

These artworks showcase my conceptual exploration of Tin Shui Wai in its diverse peoples and landscapes that inspires my project.

A Home for Heart and Hope - Dusk on the Promenade

Mental health is grounded in community support, and being able to communicate and share. To translate these considerations formally, it is important to understand how communal housing functions and can be designed to encourage positive relationships.

Bamboo as scaffolding: Synonymous with Hong Kong as a drop of water in the sea, it is used for most major construction projects as an sustainable alternative to steel. The bound and woven bamboo culms with green nylon draped over the side of a skyscraper strikes a chord in every HongKonger’s memory, and is rooted in the traditional housing typologies of both HK and China through structure and aesthetic.

Bamboo as a biocomposite material: The relative abundance of bamboo as scaffolding, and the waste generated by the construction industry when some poles become “structurally insufficient”, sparks ideas on how to repurpose the material in a cylical manner.

A Home for Heart and Hope - Greenhouse Tower

Core through community is first achieved through strength in self. The unit typology is directly influenced by a self-sufficient system that embodies the ecosystem it resides in, and gives as much as it takes.

The quick sketch describes a possible vertical strategy that connects an agricultural system, with a home system, to an aquacultural system; all raised the very fish ponds that developers seek to build over.

The inevitability of these land sale processes infuriated me, and my choice of site was a direct demonstration of the possibilities beyond the standardised.

An architecture is developed around the three principles: Aquaculture, Mangroves, and Highrise, with a specific focus on protecting and enhancing the wetlands.

A Home for Heart and Hope - Students and Families

The fundamental typology looks at agriculture as a space for productivity and self-care, to be able to instill a sense of self-sufficiency and healthy living. It first tackles the provision of food, then income through an integrated place to stay in. Interweaving an interior greenhouse between two student units create a dynamic in-between space for both units. The style is reminscient of the practice of a “dragons gate” in skyscrapers that spiritually connect people, and serves as a vital ventilation channel for the sub-tropical climate.

The residences are interconnected at different floors to allow for interactions across the complex to encourage social support and mutual connection.

Hugo Lam

Enriching people and place through an empathetic and lively international design sense

Final year project

A Home for Heart and Hope


I was awarded, by Loughborough University Architecture, an end-of-year award for the Most Innovative Space, which was presented by AHR Architects.

I engaged in the UCL's Bartlett Summer School programme, and was awarded the Best Project prize, where our collaborated on an interactive theatre that draws from the collective experiences of light and reflection to retell the story of Camden.

Work Experience

Working at Wimberly, Allison, Tong and Goo UK was an enriching experience, and I learned and engaged with architectural practice thoroughly through my placement year.

I assisted in designing a residential and mixed use masterplan in New Cairo, Egypt, with a strong emphasis in parametric design feasibilities, urban planning layouts, and housing typological design. I contributed to the design of residential development in Xi’an, China, on tower design planning packages, associated facilities detailed design features, as well as novel experience in landscape design. Furthermore, I supported the project architect on a mixed use masterplan in El Shorouk, Egypt. We represented the firm as masterplanning consultants to develop a conceptual vision incorporating a lagoon within the residential development.