27.08.2009 Axel Dürheimer

LAVA Design for the Centre of Fosters Masdar City

LAVA (Laboratory for Visionary Architecture ) wins international design competition for the heart of world's first sustainable city Masdar, located 17 kilometres from Abu Dhabi. Giant umbrellas will provide moveable shade in the day, store heat, then close and release the heat at night in the central plaza of Masdar. After winning stage 1 in January this year, LAVA teamed up with the Sydney/Dubai based Kann Finch group, engineering firm Arup (with whom Chris Bosse previously worked on the Watercube in Beijing), Transsolar (worlds leading energy consultancy), and a team of international experts. The Architects of LAVA won the design in an international competition against several hundred entries and strong competition from some of the world's most high profile architects.
The city centre of the new eco-city in the United Arab Emirates, master-designed by Foster and Partners, includes a plaza, five-star hotel, long stay hotel, a convention centre and entertainment complex and retail facilities. East and west are fused in the plaza design inspired by both the oasis, as the epicenter of Arabic nomadic life, and the iconic piazza of historical European cities. The organic forms created by the forces of natural erosion in geographical landmarks such as great canyons and wadis are the design inspiration behind the key buildings in the city centre. The solar powered umbrellas, with a design based on the principles of sunflowers, capture the sun's rays during the day, fold at night releasing the stored heat, and open again the next day. They follow the projection of the sun to provide continuous shade during the day. Chris Bosse from LAVA said: ‘the sunflower principle is eco-friendly and can be adapted to anywhere in the world – it opens opportunities for outside living, even in the desert'. The ‘sunflower umbrellas' are one aspect of the winning design. Some other key innovations of the winning plan include:
  • Building facade angles that can be altered to offset or optimise solar glare.
  • Materials on wall surfaces respond to changing temperatures and contain minimal embedded energy.
  • Water features can be stored underground during the day and at night trickle or flow strongly, triggered by passersby.
  • Interactive light poles, inspired by the oasis fire, transform the plaza into a 3-dimensional interactive media installation.
  • Interactive, heat sensitive technology activates lighting in response to pedestrian traffic and mobile phone usage.
  • Roof gardens integrate food production, energy generation, water efficiency and the reuse of organic food waste.
The government initiative Masdar is a planned city located 17 kilometres from Abu Dhabi. The city is being constructed over seven phases and is due to be completed by 2016.
Please enter your email address below to receive a password reset link.
Mandatory fields
Copyright © 2024 DETAIL. All rights reserved.