Architect and Builder Magazine South Africa Feb/Mar 2018 - Page 48

Two Towers The two towers are coupled by a clear glass roof which appears to wrap over the point of arrival and seamlessly envelope both the atrium and the pod- like structure which houses the five linked floor plates. The edge of this seemingly floating pod is open to the atrium, with the intention of activating this zone with pause areas and collaborative work spaces. Sculptural bridges crossing the atrium fan away from one another and alter in form from one level to the next. These make the floor plates efficient and facilitates future flexibility. Visitors to the building are directed to the first, above-ground parking basement. From here, two escalators, housed in a glass lobby, bring visitors into the light, treed atrium and reception area. Two lift cores containing a total of seven lifts carry users from the atrium (and the eight base- ments below) to the upper floor plates. Façade At the centre of the building, the two silvery glass wings of each tower curve away from one another, whilst coming closest to one another at the two lift and service cores. The darker, less reflective performance glass enclosing ground and first floors creates the visual effect of a strong base to the building while the seamless skins of the north and south glazed wings peak upwards 48 and towards West Street. The silhouette of the building mass behind is carved into the light entity of the silver wings. The floor plates taper towards the east and west gable ends, where complex hidden transfer structures have been designed to enable the building to lean outwards towards east and west. These impressive façades are shaped to create gentle bends in each face. Their form is further enhanced by metal fins, which not only texturise the gable façades but also provide shading. Lifestyle and Sustainability The building offers exclusive landscaped roof terraces on the 8th, 9th and 12th floors, from which to take in the remarkable, panoramic views across Johannesburg. A canteen, situated on ground floor, flows out into the atrium and onto a partly-shaded, secluded landscape deck. It also offers a gym, state of the art auditorium, dedicated cyclist and motorcyclist bays and shower and change room facilities to encourage users to commute by bicycle. The parking bays closest to the cores are dedicated to those who drive energy efficient cars. The building’s highly-engineered, fully glazed façades and favourable orientation allow for the maximum natural lighting possible while restricting glare and heat transmission. 140 West Street