A truly sustainable solution

Sheppard Robson designs new office for Siemens in Abu Dhabi

by James 08 November 2012
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    Siemens Middle East Headquarters at Masdar City has established a new model for sustainable office buildings in the Middle East. It is anticipated to be one of the first buildings in the region to achieve LEED Platinum. The design began with a simple and over-arching ambition: to maximise efficiency and build more with less. An iterative process of traditional design and parametric analysis resulted in an efficient and compact form that has reduced material and embodied carbon. Siemens Real Estate set clear standards to achieve an innovative office concept with the highest quality architectural design, the most efficient use of space and energy and the achievement of the LEED Platinum rating.

    Siemens Middle East Headquarters was designed from the inside out – led by the ambition to achieve efficiency, rather than a predetermined aesthetic, the resulting building is both commercially successful and environmentally sound: a truly sustainable solution.

    The building envelope was conceived as a box within a box: an inner highly-insulated, airtight facade designed to reduce thermal conductivity, and a lightweight aluminium external shading system which minimises solar gain while maximising daylighting and views from the building. Parametric modelling techniques were used to analyse and optimise both the floorplate arrangement and façade shading system. The plan was optimised to maximise efficiency, daylight and wall to floor ratios. The shading was developed to maximise daylight, minimise direct solar gain and maintain a view from all parts of the floor. This method of empirically testing and measuring the performance of plan and

    The office floorplates, each of 4,500 sq m, have been optimised for efficiency, daylight and flexibility using parametric modelling and achieve over 90% efficiency. They are punctuated by nine atria and served by six perimeter cores. Completely column-free floorplates incorporate 15m spans by using an innovative post-tensioned flat slab with integrated void-forming technology. This reduces the material used by approximately 60% and provides maximum flexibility for the office space planning.

    The office floors float above a fully shaded public plaza which connects the level change between the existing adjacent podium and the more formal square with its Light Rail Transport station. The plaza has been conceived as a terraced extension of the existing public realm and encourages pedestrian movement within the heart of the site.

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