Posts tagged with "double skin walls":

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Machado Silvetti’s camouflaged desert fort addition

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How can you create an architecture that hides in plain sight? This was the task of architects at Boston-based Machado Silvetti who recently completed an adaptive reuse and addition to a historic fort and grounds within the city of Al Ain, about 100 miles south of Dubai on the border between United Arab Emirates and Oman. The project provides an exhibition facility that will help to preserve, and provide access to, collections relating to Gulf history.
  • Facade Manufacturer Josef Gartner GmbH
  • Architects Machado Silvetti
  • Facade Installer Josef Gartner GmbH
  • Facade Consultants Adams Kara Taylor Facade (facade consultant); Simpson Gumpertz and Heger; Atelier Ten (MEP)
  • Location Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, UAE
  • Date of Completion phase 1: 2011; phase 2: ongoing
  • System Structurally glazed double wall
  • Products Somfy Systems (vertical blinds); Luxar (glazing)
The architects said the addition is clad entirely in glass, with a floor plate that hovers slightly above the desert sands to offer unobstructed views of the landscape while lightly bearing on the land. “When you are inside the fort, what you get is a square cut out of the sky,” said Jorge Silvetti, principal at Machado Silvetti in an interview published on the firm’s website. “It has this emptiness which is so moving and beautiful. The idea was that whatever we put there [within the fort] should interfere in the least possible way with this emptiness even as we knew we had to locate a building in some of this open space.” This realization led to a design concept of “camouflaging” new program—through the use of minimal form, materiality, and detailing—to minimize the physical and visual impact. To achieve this effect, Silvetti said careful attention was paid to the detailing of elements like a ramping entry sequence. A thin slab pierced with lighting and bracketed by handrail posts set outboard of the walking surface establishes a visual effect of “floating” over the site. This was also a response, in part, to a requirement that the addition should respect the archaeology of the historic site. “We could not dig beyond about twenty centimeters into the earth, so really, there are almost no foundations!” Glass construction in a harsh desert climate, where temperatures regularly exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit, led to numerous technical challenges for the design team. The architects sited the building along the Fort’s south wall which provided shade for most of the day, with the exception of some morning sun. Working with Atelier Ten, Machado Silvetti studied the building’s responsiveness to the environment through digital modeling and analysis, identifying areas of the facade exposed to a significant amount of solar radiation. These areas were managed with a combination of double-glazing, low-e coatings, and sensored interstitial blinds within the cavity, to filter UV light and infrared radiation. The double-glazed facade is mechanically ventilated through a clever detail that introduces air underneath the floor. The air is passively cooled under the slab prior to circulating throughout the cavity of the double skin wall. Automated blinds, installed within the cavity, provide an additional layer of solar protection. In addition to the double glazed facade, glass is employed nearly everywhere that can be seen—in the guardrails, floors, and ceilings. “Even if it's not physically true, glass gives you the feeling of coolness, of cold; glass is a cold material. It is the opposite of a warm material... the opposite of wood, certainly the opposite of mud,” said Silvetti. “And for once, the coldness of a space was something that could be understood as good—psychologically.”
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This is the best performing all-glass facade system in SOM’s history

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Surrounded by parkland and built on a former industrial site, the new JTI Headquarters is located in a Geneva district home to prestigious international organizations. JTI (Japan Tobacco International) is a global tobacco company whose flagship brands include Winston, Camel, Mild Seven, Benson & Hedges and Silk Cut. The competition-winning design consolidates four existing JTI premises within a single landmark building. The project—a collaboration between SOM’s architecture, structural engineering, and interior teams—was led by their London office, but involved expertise from SOM offices in New York and Chicago, along with architects on site in Geneva throughout construction. Kent Jackson, design partner at SOM, said the new building demonstrates SOM’s commitment to integrated design, sustainability, and innovative workplace solutions. "Clearly we feel it is a huge benefit to bring all of our disciplines together and bringing different experts from across our offices. This is something we think brings added value to a project."
  • Facade Manufacturer Josef Gertner AG
  • Architects Skidmore, Owings & Merrill; Burckhardt+Partner AG (Local Architect)
  • Facade Installer Josef Gartner AG (facade contractor)
  • Facade Consultants n/a
  • Location Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Date of Completion 2015
  • System Closed Cavity Facade (CCF)
  • Products Interpane ipasol bright white coating on low-iron glass (Outer solar control glass); Interpane iplus 3E coatings on low-iron glass (Inner triple insulated glass); Mechoshade Thermoveil 1519 ‘ Silver Birch’ (Shading blinds within cavity); Christian Pohl GmbH (Anodized aluminum perforated soffit panels)
The building’s innovative Closed Cavity Facade (CCF) was designed in collaboration with Josef Gartner GmbH as a unitized curtain wall system that responds to the demands of seasonally changing external climatic conditions while providing exceptional views out and maximizing daylight penetration into the workspace. The facade prioritizes occupant comfort and reduces the energy demand and carbon emissions of the building, helping it to meet the requirements of European energy directives and the Swiss Minergie sustainability rating. The floor-to-ceiling glazed panels measure approximately 10-foot-wide-by-14-feet-tall and consist of triple glazing on the inner layer and single glazing on the outer, forming a cavity with a fabric roller blind in between. One challenge with a typical double skin facade is the risk of condensation and dirt in the cavity. This introduces the need to provide maintenance access to the cavity, either by opening up the interior side or exterior side of the assembly. The closed cavity facade at JTI reduces these requirements, because rather than drawing external air into the cavity, the cavity is pressurized with a very small amount of filtered and dehumidified air from a pipe system that runs around the perimeter of the building. This ensures dirt and moisture from outside don't travel through into the cavity, while also preventing condensation inside the cavity. To achieve this design, SOM relied on facade contractors who have become skilled in the assembly of envelopes that minimize building air leakage. Martin Grinnell, Associate Director at SOM and Technical Lead on the project, attributes this to increasingly stringent air tightness standards in Europe, where many buildings undergo building envelope pressure testing. "We were confident we could achieve this design and get a very careful balance of air tightness with a modest pump in the basement to pressurize all of the facade panels." The German-made closed cavity facade was shop-built in individual unitized panels comprised of both the inner and outer layer of glazing. By producing these units in a controlled factory environment, the fabrication sequence could ensure the cavity remained clean throughout the construction process. The panels were tested in the factory for air tightness, and whilst stored in the yard of the factory they were temporarily tapped into an air supply system which kept the cavity pressurized prior to delivery to site. Once installed on site, the panels were plugged immediately into a network of pressurized air so that the cavity would not draw in dirty air or moisture from construction activity. With just a single glazed pane on the outer layer of the facade, Grinnell says the project team was able to produce a more expressive facade. “We were able to achieve a quilted appearance on the outside; incorporating very delicate mullions, transoms, and diagonal elements because we were using a single outer layer. We were able to facet this layer much more easily than if we were trying to do that with a double or triple glazed layer. I think this lent a real delicacy to the detailing of the outer skin of the facade." Grinnell said the facade represents one of the best performing all-glass facade systems in SOM’s history. "This was a great project, and is a great demonstration of what a closed cavity facade system can do. We're very proud of it. All of the European countries—UK included—are pushing harder and harder on energy efficiency, and clients are quite rightly looking to us to improve the efficiency of our facades. We are going to be developing more and more facades which rely on dynamic performance—having to achieve very good solar control in the summer, while admitting sunlight in the winter—and the closed cavity facade is a really interesting solution to achieve that."
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Glossy metallic finishes and LED lights reconnect 1970s-era towers to the city

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“We are offering a new type of work environment, fit for today’s world.” - Dominique Perrault Architect

The Pont de Sevres Towers were originally completed in 1975 by architects Badani and Roux-Dorlut, and have since been renamed Citylights following a complete re-structuring by Dominique Perrault Architect. The original buildings are a series of typologically modern high-rise office towers within a barren urban context. The renovation plays a key role in Paris’s recent urban expansion toward Grand Paris, now connected to the city’s public transport system and through a series of pedestrian routes providing a link to the new Trapeze district—a post-industrial revitalization where former factories are being reborn as new office and residential spaces. To physically anchor the towers to the city, the architects planned a range of spaces that open to the community via large plazas, gardens, reception areas, walkways, and communal spaces. “We are offering a new type of work environment, fit for today’s world,” said the architects in a press release. Due to an existing hexagonal floor plate and efficient elevator core layout from the 1970’s, reusing the structure yielded a plan steeped in contemporary logic, efficiency, and reality. Daylight bounces off of nearby tower facades, minimizing the difference between daylight quality in units with northward orientations vs. those with southward orientations. To maximize this effect, the architects integrated lighting and reflective cladding to produce luminous massing volumes.
  • Facade Manufacturer Goyer and West Alu
  • Architects Dominique Perrault Architect (architect); Artelia (architect of execution); Gaëlle Lauriot-Prévost Design (designer)
  • Facade Installer Goyer and West Alu
  • Facade Consultants EGIS (structure and MEP), EPPAG (facade)
  • Location Paris (Boulogne-Billancourt)
  • Date of Completion 2016
  • System double skin facade, with polished aluminum, enameled aluminum, and double serigraphy mirror and grey finishes
  • Products Alucobond : aluminum cladding and framings /  NSG: glass / Serigraphie: Arino Duglass / blinds: CYB stores / LED lights : Cardelum
Specifically, 3,400 new facade elements were installed on 366,000 square feet of facade area. Furthermore, the complex contains 81,000 sq. ft. of aluminum cladding and 180,000 square feet of glass. Two-thirds of the building envelope is covered with a flat facade framed in a polished aluminum and spandrel panels of colorless enameled aluminum. The other third of the building envelope is wrapped with a folded facade that creates formal bracelets around the towers. The bracelets are set at varying elevations as a compositional strategy in response to the existing massing of the complex. The bracelets integrate ventilation and LED lighting to reinforce a rhythm on the elevation. Along with an impressive mixed-use 16,100-square-foot base designed by Gaelle Lauriot Prevost, the project also added to the cluster of three towers with a fourth “petal” extension, recycling the same geometry for the original 1975 structures. With a similar exterior shell, the structural system of the tower was optimized to have less core space that affords a larger amount of open space. The renovation of the buildings involved increasing all window openings to be nearly two feet taller. All building equipment is organized into a ceiling plenum which geometrically responsive to the rhythm of the facade glazing. Where glazing occurs on the building envelope, a double-glazed system is integrated with 3” enameled aluminum awning strips, motorized based on weather data from a nearby weather station. Citylights has been awarded two environmental certifications: HQE (“Haute Qualite Environmental), and a “Very Good” level BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodolody) certification.  These standards were achieved after a design process that included three dimensional digital modeling to optimize equipment sizing and locations, the detailing of a “breathable” double skin facade, an automated sun protection system, increased natural light through expanded openings, and a chilled beam induction system to optimize thermal comfort. An energy analysis of the project confirms the buildings consume 50 percent less than a similar sized building, and six times less than a conventional commercial building. The chill beams are able to reduce the heating and cooling load by 30 percent. Additionally, 64 percent of the energy demand in the building is covered by renewable energy which covers a significant portion of the heating and cooling load.
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RPBW’s active double skin facade kick starts a “new generation” of campus design at Columbia University

Columbia University’s expansion has been selected by LEED for their Neighborhood Design pilot program, which calls for the integration of smart growth principles and urbanism at a neighborhood scale.

Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) is designing four buildings to be built over the upcoming years as a first phase of Columbia University’s Manhattanville campus expansion. The first of these four projects to break ground is the Jerome L. Greene Science Center, a research facility used by scientists working on mind, brain, and behavior research. The facility is ten stories wrapped in nearly 176,000 square feet of building envelope, consisting of transparent floor-to-ceiling glazing. “Columbia’s existing buildings are sited massively on the ground, and the campus— for many reasons—is gated. However, the new Manhattanville campus will express the values of this century: tolerance, openness, permeability, and transparency. It’s a new generation of campus design,” said Antoine Chaaya, the RPBW partner in charge of the Columbia project.
  • Facade Manufacturer Enclos
  • Architects Renzo Piano Building Workshop; Davis Brody Bond, LLP (Architect of Record)
  • Facade Installer Enclos; Lend Lease (construction manager)
  • Facade Consultants Israel Berger & Associates, A Vidaris Company, NY; WSP Cantor Seinuk, NY (Structural Engineer); Jaros Baum & Bolles (MEP Engineer)
  • Location New York, NY
  • Date of Completion Late 2016 (projected)
  • System structural facades, double skin walls, metal and glass canopies
  • Products laminated and insulated low iron glass wall assemblies by Interpane
An elevated subway track along the east facade generated 88 dB of noise, which needed to be significantly reduced for occupant comfort. To achieve this, the architects created a double skin facade system that was sealed from the outside. It represents the fourth double skin facade developed by RPBW, and the first to include active air circulation, according to Chaaya. “What helped us to create this fourth typology of double skin is the constraint: The fact that it cannot be permeable to the outside. It has to be sealed, and at the same time we have to fight against potential condensation. We solve the problem by active air circulation from the bottom to the top of the building.” The resulting facade system provides superior blast resistance and thermal properties, while reducing sound transmission by 45 dB. The cavity of the facade assembly is 18 inches deep, sized just large enough for maintenance access. Highly purified and dehumidified air is filtered three times and slowly cycled up vertically through the cavity at two feet per minute, a rate that ensures quiet operation and no disturbance to shading devices within the cavity. Air in the cavity cycles at a rate of six air changes per minute, managing heat gain and condensation buildup in the cavity. Variations in the facade are generated from functional responses to solar orientation due to orientation, honestly expressing the interior functions of the building. The result is a sophisticated building enclosure, abiding by a rigorously minimal design aesthetic while nimbly adapting to environmental criteria.