Re-forging Fragments
Ship Dismantling and Reassembly

Related Staff : Christian Lange

Student: Man Yee Lee, Mandy

This thesis develops a method for dismantling and transporting large decom­missioned ships and remodeling them into architecture. It applies this process to developing a cruise terminal in the port of Dalian, China, one of the container ports the government plans to transform to encompass cruise homeport functions. The thesis suggests an unconventional but emerging method of reusing steel: ‘recycling without melting’. Typically steel is melted and recycled but that process uses 1/3 of energy of making new steel from iron ore. Thus there is an emerging practice of reusing end-of-life steel components in a non-destructive way, whether in modular component structure, or in large-scale designs such as the trusses of London Olympic stadium, which uses abandoned gas pipes. This thesis experiments on the reuse of shipping vessels, because while avoiding the emissions involved in melting mass of steel, the project suggests that the shipping vessels themselves offer interesting opportunities architecturally and aesthetically. The project investigates how the dismantling and reassembly of ship parts generate spatial conditions that are diverse yet of a similar aesthetic language.