The new Siemens Headquarters in Masdar City will be 65, 617 square feet when completed by the end of this year.
We recently reported that Siemens has teamed up with Masdar to develop a new generation of sand-resistant solar panels that will make more sense for desert environments, and that building the firm’s Middle Eastern headquarters in Masdar City is part of their commitment to see that project through to completion. Now we’re happy to bring you the first round of pictures recently released by designers Sheppard Robson and spotted over on World Architecture News. Construction of the 65, 617 square foot building is well under way and should be complete by the end of 2012.
Let it be known that we have begun to reach a point – given the scale of energy, climate, and natural resource issues – where we consider any massive expenditure of brand new materials and energy unsustainable, but we do have to give Sheppard Robson credit for reducing the Siemen’s Headquarter’s footprint to a fraction of what something of this scale could have.
While Saudi Arabia continues to pursue their own brand of so-called sustainable development, in Abu Dhabi there seems to be a shift towards a more sensible policy. As Arwa pointed out, this isn’t derived from an altruistic desire to be green per se, since the Emirate is going to suck up every last ounce of oil while they can, but resource efficiency and passive design should be two important elements of any new project.
Masdar has also recently announced its intention to build a Facade Test Center (FTC) within Masdar City in order to develop building materials that respond to climatic conditions in the Middle East. To this end, Sheppard Robson has already made decent progress.
“A box within a box,” the Siemens office building is highly insulated with an airtight facade that reduces thermal conductivity. The shading system made of lightweight aluminum minimizes solar gain and maximizes daylighting (thereby reducing the amount of energy required to cool the building.)
A combination of traditional design and parametric analysis has allowed the designer to slash the project’s material use and embodied carbon footprint while column free, pre-tensioned flat slab floor plates further contributes to the project’s overall efficiency.
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