Road King Pavilion (Toy as Architecture part. 1)
Fiona Bao

Road King Pavilion (Toy as Architecture part. 1)

Groundwork Architects & Associates Ltd. as Architects

Groundwork was invited to design a pavilion at the Shenzhen Convention and Exhibition Centre, at September 2018 for Road King. Road King is Hong Kong developer that has a long history of infrastructure building and civil engineering contracting works in Mainland China before the 1990s. Since 2000s, Road King have extended their business into real estate development.



Our decision to wrap the space with functioning 4 wheels drive (4WD) toy car tracks was heavily inspired by the company’s slogan “The Endless Road”. These winding “roads” that defines the space became a symbol of nostalgia: reminding us of our childhood, whilst embodying the spirit of Road King’s motto.



We have been commissioned by the Hong Kong Government to conduct two years of research on the future of Hong Kong public playgrounds and since then, we wish to create more spaces that are joyful and fun. We have created a few of experimental architecture that are both architecture and toys.


Intrinsically, the Road King Pavilion is a gateway and a bar area where the host may greet their guests.


On the other hand, the Pavilion is a gateway for joy, so that successful real estate developers may have a moment of nostalgia, i.e. re connect with their childhood. The pavilion is interactive: within the pavilion, the guest may actually “race” with these 4 wheels drive hobby cars on the tracks, hence, the entire the 5.6 meters structure would be animated by dashing hobby cars.


We purposely chose to use high contrasting colors to make the pavilion really pop and stand out in the exhibition hall.


Very rarely do the exterior of a booth invites others to interact with it. But for this project, other than its unique visual appeal, the pavilion is as important and present as what’s being exhibited within. We purposely layered racecar tracks so that the pavilion does not block people’s sightlines, its semi-transparency allows us to see through to the other side. 


As kids, we have all played with racecar tracks, however as we aged, we outgrew the tiny racetracks. So we have decided to take these nostalgic toys and magnify them. We hope to draw guests back into that nostalgic place and associate those happy, carefree days to the exhibition, so that they may leave with a memorable experience. Thus the pavilion is not separate from the experience, it is part of the experience.


Material Used :

1. Plywood

2. 4 wheels drive toy car

3. Carpat

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