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.
Mercedes-Benz Business Center in Terian Street, Armenia by HTDSTUDIO DESIGNOFFICE
November 10th, 2011 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: HTDSTUDIO DESIGNOFFICE
The Mercedes-Benz Business Center and Intercontinental Hotel stands alone as a singular business destination in the Northern Middle East region.
Situated atop a promontory overlooking the Old City via the axis of Terian Street, the Mercedes-Benz Business Center and Intercontinental Hotel will be a beacon of progress, sustainability and excellence that is customarily associated with both global brands.
The approach is to create a ‘Living’ program where each component maximizes the following:
The Mercedes-Benz Business Center and Intercontinental Hotel takes inspiration from the rich ancient and contemporary architectural history created by various civilizations over the centuries.
From Mother Armenia benevolently watching over the complex to the awe-inspiring Cascades, to the power of Mount Ararat, MBBC is at once a structure futuristic and rational in its composition as well as reverent in its attempt to supplant the now demolished Yerevan Youth Center as a key landmark building standing sentry at the eastern Terminus of Terian Street.
The Superstructure was created for both enhanced integrity and seismic absorption. Constructed of steel (100% of which is now recycled) the four main pylons are tied together with trussed ‘bridge’ volumes at floor levels 2,3,8,9,16 and 17. A minimum of site area was disturbed to anchor the structure. Designed with sub-grade pedestrian only access for enhanced building security.
Lower program volumes such as Fitness/Spa/Restaurant are suspended from main fitness/spa volume; they are meant to ‘hang’ from the building to anticipate and counteract seismic activity and oscillation.
Grand Ballroom and Conference halls are suspended from the larger building for clearly denoted typology as well as increased speed of construction. These volumes are constructed (and chemically isolated) of Aluminum construction for increased rigidity and weight savings of up to 30%.
The creation of a steel ‘monocoque’ was necessary as the basis for the tower portion of the complex to facilitate staggering of floor units while maintaining integrity. Each floor unit is composed of an inner box-truss system around the core opening and main suite walls are made up of a steel shear-wall truss system that extends from the center. The Tower core super-structures penetrate floor plates at appropriate locations according to layout.
A smaller footprint adds value to a development project as there is reduced schedule in site prep. This approach is likened to how an oil rig would be constructed. Where the main pylon is built and key program components can be assembled and lifted into place. Construction scheduling may be enhanced as the building can be simultaneously assembled from above (jump crane) and below (assembly lift).
Floor plate Configurations
With the Quad-Core Superstructure, the Client is free to design hotel floor-plates as desired according to budget, anticipated occupancies, future expansion and so on. Each floorplate acts as a brace both vertically and horizontally throughout the building. Steel slab construction is also cross-braced to lock the structure in place. Views, green space, suite configurations dictate staggered program elements.
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