LEED Platinum facility by Sheppard Robson and AECOM opens this week in Abu Dhabi
This week Sheppard Robson has witnessed the opening of its LEED Platinum headquarters complex for technology giant Siemens in Masdar City, Abu Dhabi. The 22,800 sq m facility has been recognised as one of the most sustainable schemes in the region with floorplates achieving 90% efficiency. The project was realised for the same cost per square metre as a standard commercial building in the United Arab Emirates.
While the external façade of the headquarters block is undoubtedly memorable, a glamorous shell was not the focus of the scheme as David Ardill, Partner at Sheppard Robson explains: “We didn’t approach the project with a predetermined aesthetic; instead, we worked from the inside-out to investigate the best way of creating a truly sustainable solution for the building. This process-driven approach has resulted in an incredibly environmentally efficient structure that is also commercially rigorous.”
The building floats above a shared public plaza which encourages pedestrian traffic across the site and also creates a smooth transition from a formal square to the existing adjacent podium. Retail units have been introduced to the plaza and two glazed office receptions look out across the expanse, enhancing connectivity with the interior workings of the commercial facility.
Internally, the four office floors offer ultimate flexibility with each of the 4,500 sq m floorplates remaining column-free. These levels are punctuated by nine atria and served by six perimeter cores with the ability to be remodelled for the future use of up to 32 tenants. At this current point in time, Siemens has occupied 60% of the available space.
In partnership with AECOM, Sheppard Robson has achieved a 65% reduction in energy demand, a 50% reduction in water demand and an embodied carbon reduction of 30%. Designed as ‘a box within a box’, the structure is highly insulated and features a lightweight aluminium external shading system. Each of the facades has been specifically adapted in light of its solar orientation.