The chapel serves as the heart of the campus, with a total floor area of 1,000 sqm and an interior capacity of 600 seats. In addition, the building’s double-height atrium can expand the capacity to additional some 200 more people.
Structural system: RC+ SS
Total floor area：2,983sqm (campus 18,610sqm)
No. of stories：5 Stories / 21,6m(Height)
Design period：2006.05 – 2017.08
Const. period：2017.09 – 2019.07
Location: 53, Chang’an St, Bade District, Taoyuan City, Taiwan 334
Joshua J. Pan, FAIA (principal in charge)
Sheng-Tien Yeh, Rafael Martinez, Jason C. Ouyang, Tzu-Hua Wu, Maya Cheng,
Yu-Ting Lin, Shih-Fang Huang, Chia-Lin Yang
Client: CES Board of Trustees
Structural: Goodtech Engineering Consultant Co.
MEP: C. H. Wu Consulting Engineers
Acoustic: Department of Architecture, NTUST
The chapel also functions as the spiritual and circulatory heart of the campus, with easy access to the main entrance plaza, the academic building, library, canteen and dormitories.
The composition of the chapel is a sequence of three measured and ordered spaces. First is the foyer, which serves as the main gathering place prior and after services. Second is the nave, which is conceived as an intimate and serene space for worship. Third is the apse, designed to be a magnificent space that enhances the spirituality and symbolism of the whole chapel.
Inspired by Gothic cathedrals, the nave is an 24m by 20m column free space that utilizes soaring arches to form a continuous ribbed vault to define the space. Steel columns are extruded to the roofs, and reinforced with buttresses to form a long-span diagrid slab system mimicking a ribbed vault in gothic architecture. Articulated wooden panels are mounted in-between the columns to integrate the acoustics, and the air-conditioning system in its interior.
In contrast to the nave, the apse is a monolithic unadorned space that conveys a sense of spirituality as a sacred place where God dwells. The main wall is clad with warm natural granite and punctured by a cross-shaped opening in the middle. The cross is the only prominent religious symbol in the chapel and the effect of a soft ray of light perforating the solidity of a rock evokes the biblical passage “I’m the light of the world”.
The interior design is driven by natural lighting. Light diffuses through the glass clerestory and brightens the apse throughout the day, thereby creating a contrast between the apse and the nave. As the morning light penetrates the east facing stone façade, the chapel is filled with a spiritual aura while a bright cross is projected deep into the space.