Textual content description supplied by the architects. Kingsway Tower in Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria is a landmark mixed-use constructing set on a outstanding nook on Alfred Rewane Street, an arterial street that bisects the town main north in the direction of the airport and south to the Victoria Island. Designed by South African architects SAOTA, Kingsway Tower is 15 storeys excessive. It has a basement, a two-level retail podium, a parking podium and 12 workplace flooring ranges. Not solely does the design of Kingsway Tower introduce new architectural concepts to Lagos – the financial centre of Nigeria and one of many quickest rising cities on the earth – however additionally it is uncompromisingly world-class in its high quality and execution, reflecting the significance of this rising market in a worldwide context.
Situated in Ikoyi, a prestigious residential neighborhood, Alfred Rewane Street and its surrounds have been rezoned to create a mixed-use hall, leading to a growth in workplace and lodge developments. A lot of the event in Lagos, nonetheless, has a reasonably nameless character, typically following an ordinary industrial mannequin with concrete slab and curtain wall facades. “We wished to design a constructing that made direct references to the truth that it was in Lagos, with a façade that responded to the native weather conditions,” says SAOTA Director Greg Truen, lead architect on the venture.
The distinctively swollen, billowing type of the tower subtly references the sq. sails of the standard boats on Lagos Lagoon whereas conveying the impact of the mild breeze that characterizes the weather conditions of the town. The tower rises above a wavy cover with a “woven” sample on its underside, paying homage to material caught within the breeze. The cover sweeps round a two-level retail podium, offering shelter at avenue stage and lifting invitingly in the direction of the doorway on the most outstanding nook.
The folded, perforated aluminum screens on the tower’s outer façade are primarily liable for the constructing’s iconic id. SAOTA was, nonetheless, cautious to keep away from direct or literal metaphorical equivalencies. They most popular to summary the inspiration for its patterning – tropical vegetation, particularly palm timber, alongside the tropical lagoons in and across the metropolis – in order that they appear merely “of their place”, acceptable to the local weather and economic system of their aesthetics, practicalities and efficiency relatively than asserting overt cultural references. The screens on the outer façade are organized in a number of layers, making a porous, permeable façade with depth and a sculptural high quality, that, as Truen places it, casts “attention-grabbing shadows internally because the layers shift in opposition to one another”.
Not like typical European and American towers within the modernist custom, the façade therapy is configured extra like a shopfront than a curtain wall. “The slab initiatives previous the glass face,” says Truen. The aluminium display is positioned on the finish of the slab, which not solely improves the passive efficiency of the constructing by decreasing the photo voltaic load, but it surely additionally permits entry across the perimeter for simple cleansing and upkeep. “The opposite climatic response was to place the constructing with the quick facades dealing with east-west, and the lengthy facades north and south,” says Truen. “The solar will get into the sky in a short time in Lagos, so that you’re coping with a warmth load that’s coming from a reasonably vertical angle. The mixture of the overhangs, the shading units and the north-south elevations could be very efficient.”
The road stage facade under the curved cover is populated with publicly accessible areas, tying it meaningfully to its context and presenting a extremely open visible connection to the road and sidewalk, significantly on the outstanding nook of Glover and Alfred Rewane Roads. At night time, LED lighting enhances the impression of openness and accessibility, to not point out its visible influence. “It was essential to activate the road nook and provides it a presence,” says Truen. This strategy is uncommon in Lagos, the place most buildings current clean partitions and fences to the road, severing them from their environment and doing little or nothing to boost the standard of the streetscape and shared public area round them. SAOTA hopes that this intervention will catalyze constructive change whereas making a contribution to the city material instantly round it.
The inside structure and design of the foyer picks up on the diagonal grid-like factor of the cover, expressed within the paneling as faceted timber triangular parts folded round a diagonal axis. This sculptural strategy and easy patterning, together with the usage of available supplies, allowed for the entire joinery to be sourced and constructed domestically. The daring cone-shaped cover over the reception desk has an influence from past the constructing, creating curiosity from the road exterior. Just like the façade, the inside foyer therapy renders extra element and curiosity as you strategy it.
The facility provide in Lagos is erratic and municipal companies reminiscent of water and sewage are restricted or absent. Consequently, along with passive vitality options that considerably cut back the requirement for air-conditioning and offering ample pure lighting, all servicing – water provide and therapy, backup energy technology and sewage therapy – is supplied on website. The fast development of Lagos, with a inhabitants upward of 20-million folks and climbing, locations distinctive calls for on the town and its structure. “It’s a spot that doesn’t have any time for nostalgia,” says Truen. “It’s always renewing itself to deal with the capability that’s required.”
On this context, Kingsway Tower goals to inaugurate a brand new design narrative, addressing the town’s distinctive calls for and challenges whereas reflecting each native and international confidence, an strategy affirmed by Kingsway Towers’ first tenant, worldwide pc software program and expertise firm Microsoft.