African Design Magazine November 2015 - Page 21

African project MultiChoice City active technologies, and good passive design and material choices. MultiChoice has long had a drive to improve their sustainability within their built environment, and MultiChoice City is the first building within the corporate’s stable to be Green Star rated. The building layout faces predominately east-west due to the natural orientation of the property, which added to the design challenge. Besides the thermally efficient glazing chosen for the facades and the deep overhangs of the roof which create much-needed shading, integrated blinds which track the sun’s movement were specified, to adapt the building to its environment and ensure comfortable working environments within throughout the day. Both greywater and rainwater harvesting systems are employed to minimise the use of potable water for uses like toilet flushing and garden irrigation. Practical specification of finishes including those with low VOC emissions, local sourcing, and reduced resource consumption such as low flow sanitary fittings , low energy use bulbs on movement sensors, solar geysers and gas stoves, were all brought to bear on the detailed design development of the building. The HVAC system makes use of a thermal storage approach which allows the manufacture of coolth at night by freezing thermal storage balls – when loads are low and energy prices are reduced – to use during the day to power the AC when the building is actually at maximum demand. A sustainable building is not only about resource consumption, but also about creating better places to work, minimising sick days, and maximising successful production. Besides the environmental quality issues the building addressed, MultiChoice has also provided a number of amenities within the building improving the staff’s work environment and providing convenience and time saving. These amenities include a wellness facility with a gym, restaurants, a cinema, and major conferencing elements with advanced technology, encouraging staff to connect with colleagues across the country and the world, all from their base in Randburg. A Gautrain bus stop will soon be located outside the campus, making it easy for staff to commute using public transport. Within the scheme the project provides cycle parking and shower facilities, again encouraging modal shifts from private car usage. The aim of DSGN, the interior designers, was a scheme representing MultiChoice’s corporate culture and articulating its brand values through three dimensional design. Read more here 21