Heliport crowns Atkins' planned Ad Astra Tower in coastal Georgian city of Batumi
Atkins has just released these remarkable designs for a new mixed-use facility in the seaside city of the Batumi on the edge of the Black Sea. Conceptualised for client Sustainable Growth Investments, the 45-storey tower is topped by a covered heliport which can be unveiled as a helicopter approaches. The building incorporates a 140-key, 5-star hotel, offices, retail units, penthouse apartments, a sky restaurant, multipurpose events hall, and a champagne lounge.
During the early design stages, the Atkins team was inspired by numerous historical structures in the Georgian countryside. They explain: “The concept design takes inspiration from the soaring watch towers seen in the unspoiled, unknown and unbelievably beautiful north eastern region of Georgia. The vernacular architecture is something no visitor to this region will ever forget as the past is written on the landscape in stone.”
Atkins’ Ad Astra Tower is a contemporary interpretation of these brick and stone watch towers, soaring skywards with a white concrete diagrid structure. Intelligent design utilises a triangulated system which braces the building against horizontal loads whilst the inclined members of the external diagrid structure carry the vertical loads. This geometric form will create a new point of interest on the Batumi skyline and will visible from a number of vantage points across the city and from the southern slopes of The Greater Caucasus mountain range.
Low energy environmental control systems are employed throughout the 51,490 sq m tower, enabled by careful analysis of effects that overhangs and integrating louvers in the diagrid system will have on the amount of light and shade that will enter the internal spaces. The shading option provides a 40% improvement on the maximum plant cooling load from that required by a baseline tower with external glazing only.