Project Name – AKSHAYA 36, Chennai
Area – 153795 sq. ft.
Program: To provide a multi- level office building for a client with requirements of a reception, gym, cafeteria and individual office spaces.
Site characteristics and Location: Located in a 3810 sqm plot in Chennai, India in a newly developing commercial area, the plot has ground coverage and height restrictions. The ground coverage is restricted to 35% of the plot while the permissible height is 9 levels and the allowed buildable space is 2.5 times the plot area. Chennai has an average temperature of 40ºC through 8 months of the year and 30ºC for the remaining 4 months , with the sun always in the Southern hemisphere throughout.
Zoning Constraints: A fixed setback of minimum 8 meters had to be left from all sides for the movement of fire tender. The height constraint for the superstructure was of 45 meters and maximum allowable substructure depth was of 9 meters. There was no other constraints.
Design description: In response to the climate, the southern side of the building houses the vertical circulation and all service areas thus creating a buffer to reduce heat gain to the internal office spaces which are north oriented.
Based on the client’s brief, each floor of 1600 sqm area is divisible into smaller offices of 300 to 500 sqm. Rather than completely opening the building towards the north which would eventually result in overlooking the adjacent development in the future, the building has north facing rectilinear incisions.
These interstitial incisions have stepped back landscaped terraces that are again north facing. This allows each office space to have indirect natural light from 3 sides, thereby completely removing the need of any artificial lighting through the day. Simultaneously, the office spaces look out into landscaped gardens that act as extensions to the internal spaces. The external sides of the building are constructed of brick screens that create privacy from the road and the adjacent developments to this relatively small plot.
In a complete deviation from most large office buildings which are completely enclosed, this design creates island offices surrounded by landscape. The landscaped spaces achieved are 100% of the plot size. Indirect lighting from the north, reduction of heat gain from the south, generation of extensive landscaped spaces and use of materials render the design energy efficient and sustainable.
Construction system: The structure is an RCC framed one. The bricks proposed are of fly ash, a byproduct of quick lime, cement and gypsum. Moreover, the pattern of the brick screen is designed in a way so as to decrease the ASE (Annual Sun Exposure) to as low as 9% and increase the SDE (Spatial Daylight Autonomy) to as much as 90% for each floor-plate thereby reducing the dependence of the building on Mechanical Cooling Systems and Artificial Lighting systems respectively, thus adding to the sustainably of the design.
Sanjay Puri , the Principal Architect of Sanjay Puri Architects, India has been a speaker and a judge at numerous international architecture events including the LEAF & WAF.
His firm founded in 1992, has won 100 international architecture awards including 4 Chicago Athenaeum Awards, 8 WAF Awards, 12 World Architecture Community U.K Awards, the LEAF , 5 Architizer Awards, 3 Hospitality Design Awards, 14 MIPIM Awards and several more.
His firm has successfully completed over 600 projects totaling over 60 million square feet.
Sanjay Puri and his firm of 72 architects now, continue their quest for creating sustainable design, charting new territories of spatial perception simultaneously imbibing the intrinsic values of Indian heritage & culture within their design solutions.
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