Build a concept machine

Thumbnail Image
Other Title
Li, Yinsu
Author ORCID Profiles (clickable)
Master of Architecture (Professional)
Unitec, Te Pūkenga – New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology
Byrd, Hugh
McPherson, Peter
Masters Thesis
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
Westgate (Auckland, N.Z.)
Auckland (N.Z.)
theatre building design
acoustic architecture
Te Aranga Design Principles
New Zealand
ANZSRC Field of Research Code (2020)
Li, Y. (2023).Build a concept machine (Unpublished document submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecture (Professional)). Unitec, Te Pūkenga - New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology
RESEARCH QUESTION How can the use of computational design as a design process tool influence the design outcome for a community performance space? ABSTRACT In architectural practice, limited timeframes and budgets are common problems for designers. It is also challenging for designers to predict the future occupants’ spatial experience at an early concept stage. Regarding these design problems, the computational simulation can provide technical proof to support the designer in decision-making. Architectural optimisation is beneficial for design by analysing building performance between different architectural geometries in the design process. The primary purpose of this project is to investigate how to design a computational program as a machine that can automatically generate concept design alternatives. This thesis intends to discuss the influence of computational design on the design outcome. This research project is process oriented. The project applies the research method of research through design. A small-scale community performance facility is the proposed building type in the design exploration. Through this study, a deeper understanding of computational design processes is expected to contribute to advancing the architectural design field. This project provides an important opportunity to advance the understanding of computational generative design. In the theory of computational generative design, the designer must abstract design factors as principles in the generative design process. This research focuses on how to use algorithmic thinking to formulate design principles. Computational design’s benefits and limitations are discussed during the study. As many optimisation algorithms have been used in architectural design optimisation, this thesis needs to discuss how to select appropriate algorithms from various computational optimisation algorithms. In computational optimisation, it is important to determine numeric input variables and the optimisation objectives in the output. So, this project reviews the requirements of the performance space design and investigates the site context background to study the feasibility of the computational application. In the design process, the project creates experimental design optimisation programs. The programs reflect the computational process through research and evaluation. The last program is designed to provide architectural solutions to assist further design in this project. [...] Acoustic analysis of existing theatres - In this section, three Auckland local theatres are selected for acoustic simulations. The three theatres include Q Theatre in Auckland city centre, The Auckland Performing Arts Centre (TAPAC) at Western Springs, and The Pump House at Takapuna. The modelling reference is from property files ordered from the Auckland Counci. Design site: Behind NorthWest Shopping Centre in Westgate, Auckland, New Zealand
Link to ePress publication
Copyright holder
Copyright notice
All rights reserved
Copyright license
Available online at