Assistant Architect - Chapter 23

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Assistant Architect by Xi He Qing Ling


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Chapter 23: Light


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Most of the people in the conference room reacted likeZhang Siyi. They were shocked by the image of the flower.


As Peng\'s presentation continued people were immersed inthe layout highlights and it seemed like everyone had some preconceived notionsabout the design. Many people weren\'t paying attention to the details of Peng\'sspeech.


Anyway, it sounds almost the same as his teams\' plan withlogical placement of buildings and utilities within the design layout. However,the similarities ended there. While Group A design was based on being costeffective within the guidelines of the rules and regulations. Group B design issolely based on dividing the whole plot through various roadways into a flowerwith each section becoming a petal.


The flower theme was derived from the Chinese Daffodilmeaning rebirth and wealth. It is the flower of Z City. Peng Shuang introducedthe flower theme because Group B wanted to capitalize on the flower\'s meaningand infuse these essences into the city to create a new soul.


After Peng Shuang finishedspeaking, everyone expressed excitement. This kind of scheme is veryeye-catching and innovative.


However, Zhang Siyi thought thisscheme has problems. While many parts to the plan were like a mirror to his owngroup\'s plan, there were parts that seemed impractical. He can\'t tell if hefeels this way because he is in the competing group or not.


At this moment, Gu Yu heldhis arm and calmly asked Peng Shuang: “What solutions do you have in theactual implementation and construction of the project?” Although this isonly an internal meeting, not a real bid, it is good practice to debate thedetails in the plan in preparation for a live bid. Except for the people representinga design plan, normally everyone else are government officials or developersand they can ask as many questions as they want. The representing Group isrequired to give them reasonable explanations and answers.


Peng Shuangyi said,“This is not yet…”


He wanted to say, “wehaven’t considered it yet”, but this is absolutely taboo when reporting,so Child Labor with relatively rich experience immediately interrupted him:“We are still considering it, and there are already some preliminarystages, but there isn\'t an in-depth analysis yet.”


Gu Yu scrutinized the plan:“That can also be said about your preliminary ideas.”


Everyone was silent. ZhuHongzhen touched Zhang Siyi\'s arm with his elbow and used his eyes to indicatethat "a good show is coming".


Child Labor paused and said:“As a government-led first-phase plan, we envisioned starting therectification process from the Longshui Port as the center and then proceeding eastfrom the first petal and later develop in a clockwise order."


Because of the dangers fromthe flood discharged at the current port, Group B changed it. The plan involveddigging deep into the harbor, landfilling some of the surrounding geography andcreating a circular concave lake. New islands would be built in the middle of"Longshui Lake" to house sewage treatment facilities and new environmentallyprotected areas.


Gu Yu asked Peng Shuang toswitch the slide to the master plan map and with a red laser pointer pointingto the leading port road he asked: “Finishing the lake requires a lot ofexcavation earthwork and landfill earthwork. This first phase will inevitably affectthe existing situation of the two divisions of Zhengbei and Zhengnan especiallyin the area to u200bu200bthe south of the lake. If problems are caused during therepair period, the consequences will be disastrous.”


Child Labor: “You canlet the residents first demolish the Yi house, move to the west, wait for thesouth to reorganize and then move back to the original place…”


Gu Yu also pointed to theroute from the old city to the new area of u200bu200bthe railway station and said:"According to the urban transportation demand, the first road to be developedis from northwest to southeast. The outline of these two petals, if you developin the original plan, it seems a bit backwards.”


Child Labor was anxious todefend her position, but Gu Yu didn’t give her time to think about it. Hecontinued: “The east, the south, and the west are all top issues. Doesn’tthat mean simultaneous development?”


Child Labor: “Thendevelop synchronously!”


Gu Yu raised an eyebrow:“What is the overall cycle? Five years? Ten years? Can the governmentafford it?”


Child Labor has turned red:“The follow-up can be discussed again.”


Gu Yu took his citydevelopment map from his own folder and gently passed it to the other side. Healso stood up and said: “The development of each city has its own rules,just like plant growth, any construction project needs a step by stepimplementation plan. The economic source and heart of Z City are nowhere,” he pointed to the core location of the old city and pointed to thenew planned area. “The new area is poor in resources and backward indevelopment, let alone change the overall landscape of the leading port. Therewill be more serious impacts. It is very difficult to ensure that the planningstructure of this flower is not destroyed during the simultaneous development.If the flower has not yet been opened, it will have dragged down thedevelopment of the city and consumes it.”


Zhang Siyi secretly clenchedhis fists, yes, that’s it. Gu Yu completely said what he wanted to say!


Only when he went to thelocation personally did he feel the environment deeply and reflect on theexpectations of the local people for life. He realized that the vision of theChild Labor Group is too far-fetched for the people of Z City now. For them, abeautiful garden city is not as good as a party. The important thing is not tobuild something beautiful, but to improve their quality of life.


Child Labor was silent for amoment, and she replied: “We don\'t need to consider these for the timebeing. The government’s bidding is nothing more than planning creativity, andthey have their own considerations for development and constructionsteps.”


Gu Yu solemnly said:“We don’t think about who to consider? Unless the local government hasfunds for a decade or more, the project can stagnate or even end since large-scaleconstruction and development of various parts of the country is numerous. Howlikely will the project be built if it took years of determination to implement.Indeed, we are not decision makers, but I think that government tendering ismore than just a beautiful design. If we have the corresponding expertise andcapabilities, why can’t we contribute rationally and plan at the verybeginning? It\'s more feasible that way, isn’t it?”


His tone is not heavy, butevery word is concise and logical. Sitting in the corner of the room, ZhangSiyi is staring at Gu Yu. It is like Gu Yu is the center sun and his body just issueda burst of light, enlightening all those around him.


He heard the roar of hisheartbeat, and the time seemed to fall back to the past. The autumn of sixyears ago in the auditorium, a group of young teenagers sitting down and lookedup at the arrogant son of Tiancheng. The champion of Ningcheng, standing on thehigh podium, calmly talking about his ideals and ambitions… Zhang Siyi seesGu Yu in the same way as he did then: dazzling. Some people are born to wander,some people are born to shine and be followed.


Child Labor was dumbfoundedby Gu Yu, and one of the chief architects\' present said, “The idea of a floweris good, but it is a bit idealistic.”


However, there are otherswho agree with the flower plan: “Child Labor is right, we don\'t need to havean entire land staging plan for the initial proposal. As for the specificimplementation, it is not something we need to consider. From my experience,the superiors also like beautiful plans. The scheme of the A Group isrelatively conservative.


The conference room wascaught in a debate with many opposing views. Both A Group and B Group projectteams went back to the office. The Directors said that they would wait untilafter careful discussion before deciding which option to choose. Zhang Siyi andeveryone returned to their seats and discussed it privately.


Bi Lele said: “Hey, Ithink Tong Heyi\'s team plan is really pretty, and it is too shocking at firstglance.”


Yuan Zhicheng: “If Ididn’t listen to the boss and say those questions, I am the party I also choosethe child labor group.”


Zhu Hongzhen said withemotion: “Yes, in this society that looks at the face, most people havebecome superficial.”


Bi Lele: “The problemis that it\'s not easy to implement. Child Labor group plan is logical andprofessional.”


While waiting for thecompany\'s upper level Directors to decide, Zhang Siyi was starting to feel abit apprehensive. Although his contributions were as a "patch" and the plan didn\'thave a huge visual impact, he hopes that this warship will sail in thedirection chosen by Gu Yu. However, expectations always deviate from reality.


Before leaving work in theevening, the conclusion came out. The upper level of the company decided tomove forwards with the plan from B Group and let Gu Yu help them do areasonable construction and implementation plan. Everyone seems to haveexpected this ending and although the heart is frustrated, the surface is notvery revealing. Only Zhang Siyi, like a huge blow, was devastated.


He remembered the hard workof walking all day, breaking his legs. He thought of Gu Yu\'s patience when heasked the locals about the prospects of the new district\'s planning. He thoughtof Gu Yu\'s expression when eating biscuits and thought of him standing on thebank of the river… But now, it\'s all gone. By a few words, the executives inthe company easily negate what they’ve accomplished.


Afterwards, Gu Yu came overto comfort them. He let them relax and he joked. As long as they give someassistance in the follow-up process since its B Group plan to refine, most ofthem do not need to work overtime. Zhang Siyi was also notified, and he wentback to drawing the parking lot. In the evening, Zhang Siyi returned home witha low mood, and his heart mixed.


Because Zhang Siyi rarelycame home before 8pm, Fu Xinhui was really surprised to see him: "Hey! Get out!You are here."


Zhang Siyi went to the sideof the sofa than collapsed like a dead fish and did not want to say a word.


Barefooted, Fu Xinhui lethim sit a little, then asked: “What’s the matter?”


Zhang Siyi didn’t move. Hewas staring into space. After two minutes, he said: “Oh, reality is toodifficult…”


In a serious tone Fu Xinhuisaid: “Are you being fired?”


Zhang Siyi: “My ass, no!”


Zhang Siyi turned over withhis back to Fu Xinhui and continued sulking. Not only is the reality cruel, butthe road of architecture is far more difficult than Zhang Siyi imagined.


The real architect, neithera foolish scheme on the TV nor a lucky one-hit break, has a goal. In thebiography of the master architects, those who are sitting in a mansion with adaily income of 10 million are the winners of life…


Most architects are ordinarypeople, they may be like Gu Yu and stay in a small office. Although they may haveinfinite knowledge about modern and ancient architecture and engineering issueslike dealing with sewage problems, they aren\'t invincible. Even a well-thought-outplan is deemed wasteful.


Zhang Siyi couldn’t helpwonder, if he is standing in the position of Gu Yu now with the same result,would he be as calm as he is? …… No, he will be very depressed, veryunwilling!


Zhang Si Yi collapsed on thesofa. He isn\'t clear about his future. Is this what is means to be inarchitect? To accept defeat? This is the first time since entering theworkplace that he feels so confused about his future in architecture. He Isn\'teven at the level of his superiors, let alone the architectural maters heaspired to when he was studying. It was all a bunch of dreamy bubbles floatingaway. If this is what it means, then can he still proceed down this road? How farwill he be able to take it?


Seeing Zhang Siyi\'s mode ofself-pity, Fu Xinfei kicked his ass fiercely: "Stupid! Get up! Let\'s eat!"


Zhang Siyi: “…”


Fu Xinfei put on socks,swearing: “Shit. All 3 of us were originally going to live togetherbecause it was supposed to be fun. But now, every day with overtime, businesstrips, and a woman, I am like a widow!"


Zhang Si Yi rubbed his bruisedbutt, asked: “who found a woman? Jiang Hai?"


Fu Xinhui stood up andshouted: “Yes! While you\'ve become a workaholic, two months ago, Jiang Haimet someone at his company. They have been out every night to eat!"


Zhang Siyi shocked: “Really?So Fast!” Didn’t he work overtime every day before? Why does he have timefor a date suddenly?"


Fu Xinhui snorted: “Hestarted working overtime because he was a newcomer. He was like how you are now,working all the time for your ruthless Boss. He has paid his dues already."


Zhang Siyi was originallytortured by the cruelty of reality. Work is work. He cannot go to work unhappy.After work he is not happy. Ah!


Zhang Siyi bounced off thesofa: “I want to eat soy pork liver rice!”


Fu Xinhui saw that he wasfull of blood and resurrection. He smiled and whispered: “Idiot.”


The two of them wentdownstairs to get a quick bite to eat. Zhang Siyi was utterly disappointed withhis food. Last time he went out was with Gu Yu eating sand tea noodles. ZhangSiyi lamented: "Hey I told you! That sand tea soup was the best ever. I willforever miss the taste."


Fu Xinhui casually said:"Eh? Just go buy a plane ticket."


Zhang Siyi feeling a bitdepressed, thought about B Group flower plan, then convinced himself that if itis built, then he will be able to eat sand tea noodles again.


He looked at Fu Xinhui and asked:“Are you looking for a job? Doesn\'t your family remind you?”


Fu Xinhui smiled and said:“They urged me to go to the company at home and work, but the company athome is also paid by my parents. It\'s better to stay here.”


Zhang Siyi: “…”


Although Zhang Siyi isn\'t convincedby Fu Xinhui words, he knows he has his own reasons and doesn\'t say anythingfurther. He heard Fu Xinhui say before that he has a sister that is eight yearsolder then him. She went to the United States for a degree there and now worksas the vice president of the family business.


However, Fu Xinhui’srelationship with his sister is not very good. His birth was unexpected in thefamily. After he was born, because he was a boy, he was always favored by someparents. His sister felt his existence was an insult to her status. As aresult, Fu Xinhui gradually developed a less competitive temperament in orderto give way to her.


Zhang Siyi is the onlychild. He can’t understand Fu Xinhui’s relationship with his sister. He doesn’tknow what to say: “Would you not be bored when you stay at home every day?It’s good to get a job and do it "


Fu Xinhui: “well, even if I want to find a job, I look at you. You are working so hard…"


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