Design led by the ambition for a Leed Platinum rating
THE new Siemens headquarters for the Middle East currently being built in Masdar City in Abu Dhabi, UAE, designed by Sheppard Robson, has been named winner of the coveted MIPIM Architectural Review Future Projects Awards 2012 in the offices category. The prize will be awarded at the international real estate event, MIPIM, on March 7 in Cannes, France.
The jury explained their decision for selecting the Siemens headquarters in Masdar City, one of the integrated units of Masdar, saying: “This is a thorough investigation of the design of large floorplate space in an extreme climate, with a well-explained proposition emerging. The ambition for Leed (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum rating means the project will be followed by many designers and clients with great interest.”
The new headquarters is part of a long-term strategic partnership between Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s multi-faceted renewable energy company, and Siemens to develop and utilise key energy efficient technologies. The building, commissioned by Masdar, designed with strong oversight by Siemens Real Estate, will meet the highest requirements in terms of architecture, energy efficiency and equipment – potentially resulting in a 45 per cent reduction in energy consumption and a 50 per cent reduction in water consumption (compared with the internationally acknowledged Ashrae standard).
Masdar is already working on several projects for ensuring energy efficiency in government buildings. It has expanded its outreach to other government departments in Abu Dhabi to encourage them to adopt green initiatives.
For Siemens in the Middle East, the recognition of this award further underscores the growing importance throughout the region of building new structures with energy efficiency in mind. “We clearly see that there is a very thoughtful, growing mindset to keep building in an energy efficient way. It is important to receive this recognition and help sustain more efforts like this throughout the region,” said Joachim Kundt, CEO of Siemens Lower Gulf region.
Masdar’s innovative architecture has previously won the Royal Institute of British Architects International Awards for Masdar Institute’s architectural excellence. Dr Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, the CEO of Masdar, said: “This award is a testament to the innovative and sustainable architectural design that Masdar promotes. Sustainability is an integral part of Masdar’s core values as we seek to help transform Abu Dhabi from a fossil-fuel based economy to a knowledge-based one. Masdar City is a place where businesses can thrive and innovations can flourish and this building will serve as a model for sustainable cities across the world, pioneering best practices in sustainable urban planning, design and development.”
Mark Kowal, partner and head of offices at Sheppard Robson, said: “Siemens Middle East headquarters was designed from the inside out – led by the ambition to achieve efficiency, rather than a predetermined aesthetic, the resulting building is both commercially successful and environmentally sound: a truly sustainable solution aligned with Masdar’s vision for the low carbon city.”
The MIPIM Architectural Review Future Projects Award in the office category recognises the contribution that the new building will make to its context in terms of urban design and its human qualities, as well as the attributes of the building, particularly in enhancing workplace productivity.