Attempting to reinterpret history from a contemporary perspective is never an easy feat. However, for the design competition that sought to redevelop the Singapore Red Cross House earlier this year, the design team at ONG&ONG did just that with a winning design proposal that addressed the main historical and programmatic considerations of the brief, updating the Red Cross House with a fresh, new look and addressing its historical legacy along the way.
For the SRC – an organisation with a seventy-year heritage and history rooted in local and international humanitarian efforts – the design team at ONG&ONG faced a twofold requirement that demanded a preservation of the original Red Cross House structure and an introduction of a new building within the existing site. The final design, more than just blending the old and the new, had to reflect the spirit of the organisation and meet and anticipate the current and future needs of the Singapore Red Cross.
As part of the design proposal, ONG&ONG’s design team introduced a new building that took full advantage of its site, while referencing SRC’s nostalgic and rich past, and its existing building’s surrounding context. Thus, the team proposed to restore the original Red Cross House building to its initial 2-storey form and convert it into a space for the Red Cross Academy and a thrift store, adding a new 10-storey office tower and connecting the existing and new structures via a landscaped plaza and a detached office lift core.
The new and the old buildings convey the history and legacy of the Singapore Red Cross in a variety of ways. The tower is unmistakably indicative of its organisation from the very first glance – the north and south façades feature the Red Cross’s colour scheme in a composition of concrete geometric fins, folded like paper planes and forming the organisation’s distinctive logo. Meanwhile, the original structure reminds of its days of glory, with a restored shape and proportion that recalls the building as it used to be decades ago.
The developer of Tanjong Pagar Centre is pinning its hopes on its latest development to be at the heart of efforts to rejuvenate the Tanjong Pagar District.
At 290 metres high, Tanjong Pagar Centre is set to be Singapore’s tallest building. The mixed-use development will combine 890,000 square feet of office space, 100,000 square feet of retail, a park with more than 200 hotel rooms and 181 residences.
UOB Plaza, Republic Plaza and One Raffles Place are about 280 metres high.
London-based Heatherwick Studio collaborated with local firm CPG Consultants on the Learning Hub, a new eight-storey teaching facility at Nanyang Technological University.
To avoid creating "miles of corridors linking box-like lecture rooms", the building was designed as a cluster of tapered towers surrounding an expansive atrium. The idea was to combine learning facilities with social spaces including balconies, gardens and open-air corridors, to encourage as many opportunities for staff and student interactions as possible.
The 12 towers, which each taper inwards towards the base, accommodate a total of 56 oval classrooms. According to the designers, the non-hierarchal round shape – without any corners or obvious fronts or backs – will encourage more collaborative learning.
Clad with curved concrete panels, the towers feature irregular horizontal stripes that were created using 10 adjustable silicone moulds. This texture lends each tower the look of a root vegetable, although the designers liken the appearance with wet clay.
Balconies extend around the inside of the towers and get larger towards the top of the building, offering views into the atrium. This space is naturally ventilated, allowing air to circulate throughout.
The towers are raised off the ground on 61 angled concrete columns, each featuring an undulating surface texture, and small areas of planting surround many of them.
Meanwhile, the concrete walls surrounding the stair and elevator cores slotted between the towers have been embossed with over 700 drawings by illustrator Sara Fanelli, depicting images from science, art and literature.
The project forms part of a wider campus redevelopment for Nanyang Technological University which, with over 33,000 students, is one of Singapore's largest public universities.
The two firms have now completed the first phase of construction. This includes the seven-storey-high blocks one and two, as well as parts of blocks three and five – accounting for 106,000 square metres of floor space.
The design is centred around the idea of "non-linear" structures. Rather than dividing the campus into different faculties, the architects want to encourage interaction between different departments, as well as between staff and students.
The campus is organised around a north-to-south and an east-to-west axis. These intersect at a point called the campus centre, which forms a flexible multi-purpose space that can be used to host exhibitions and other events.
From here, corridors lead through to the main auditorium, the main library and the International Design Centre – a hub for technology-driven research. Classrooms, laboratories and meeting rooms are spread out across the campus.
Externally, a pre-cast concrete facade system gives the building a bright white surface. This is interspersed with flashes of green, red and purple, helping users to navigate the campus.
The two completed buildings and those still underway frame courtyards, which are planted with native trees and flowing plants. Balcony corridors cover the surrounding courtyard walls, and there are also roof gardens and terraces.
Responding to the tropical climate, the structures incorporate natural ventilation. Sheltered walkways provide safe routes across the site during monsoons, while louvred sunshades across the windows protect the interiors from direct sunlight.
Right where Singapore meets the world, is the island’s next destination — Jewel Changi Airport. A unique mix of lush nature and urban energy that will bring together a world of ideas in leisure, shopping, and dining. Creating first-class experiences to delight and inspire.
Work has started on Project Jewel, the new retail and lifestyle complex at Changi Airport.
The glass-and-steel complex to be built on the open-air carpark in front of Terminal 1, will be the central hub connecting airport Terminals 1, 2 and 3.
The complex, to open by end 2018, will have five storeys above ground, and five basement levels. It boasts a gross floor area of about 134,000 sq m that will be used for retail, airport operations, attractions and a hotel.
The multi-storey complex will be encased in a distinctive glass and steel dome. It will also feature a waterfall as high as five storeys or 40m within a lush indoor garden. There will be an estimated 270 to 300 retail tenants.
It will connect the three existing terminals and Changi Airport MRT by foot, and add a passenger handling capacity of three million to Changi's current tally of 66 million per year.
There will be facilities dedicated to the fly-cruise and fly-coach passenger segments to make travel experiences smoother.
Terminal 1 will also be expanded to allow more space for the arrival hall, baggage claim areas and taxi bays.