Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Emile Rassam Building in Dekwaneh, Lebanon by Paul Kaloustian Architect
March 31st, 2011 by Sumit Singhal
The program of the building consists of four major elements: factory (lower floors), storage (upper floors), office and showroom (ground and mezzanine floors).
The large public space (offices and showroom) , the heart of the building organism, is located on street level (the center of the building). The showroom becomes part of the open office space with displayed items inhabiting the big open hall on both levels creating a sort of a promenade within the public space. The large rounded shaped void allows visual connection between the floors, thus promoting communication and dynamic relations between space and people.
The exterior facades are the translation of the program behind. The storage box consists of translucent polycarbonate panels which allow light but discards heat and glare while the base of the building is totally transparent (as a delicate glass box) allowing maximum light to the public spaces.
The four facades have long stretched curves, gently distorting the building mass and breaking the stagnant and defined nature of the box, while at the same time affecting the interior spaces.
The general exterior aspect of the building creates an unmistakable identity through the use of very light materials (polycarbonate and glass). The massing becomes a negation of the rigid and imposing industrial structures built around the project. A sense of disappearance is generated by the envelope which becomes an active instrument that reflects the changes in weather and light conditions. The building is light and changing, producing an image as a statement of identity. An image between the real and the virtual.
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