Architecture / Practice
Graphic Design / Illustrations
Lectures / Presentations
Nasser B. Abulhasan, Joaquín Pérez - Goicoechea
Design Project Leader
Onsite Project Leaders
Sara Barranco, Samer Mohammad
Margaux Van Houtte, Abdul Hafiz Bahi El Din Mohamed, Javier Alonso, Nima Haghighatpour, Ana López, Marisa Ollero
The plot is situated within a new urban development in the south of Kuwait City, off the Fahaheel highway that runs southward along the seashore all the way to the Arabian border. Masterplan envisions a mix-use area combining low-to-medium-rise residential and retail complexes at its core, while proposing a high-rise building line at its eastern limit, overlooking the beach front beyond the motorway. Thus there will be six towers that are intended to be a reference icon of this new area.
AGi’s design proposal for three of those six towers tries to endow this residential complex with a sense of unity so that they can be recognized as an ensemble, while keeping their individual character, following client’s requirements. These requirements also included a rate of three parking slots per apartment, and other common facilities such as swimming pool, gym, multipurpose areas, etc, which meant a huge built volume to add to the dwelling areas. Because of the sea proximity, ground water table is a serious inconvenience to build such a big parking volume underground, and taking into account that these complementary uses are not included at FAR restrictions, so final scheme sets a multilayered plinth that rises upon the ground level to “float”, enabling us to locate main and service entrances, common facilities, swimming pool, etc at ground floor. This plinth is used as well to stress the sense of unity we were looking for the complex, wrapped in a metallic skin that includes all the three parking volumes in one big stratum, from which the towers rise to the sky.
Each tower consists of 90 dwelling units arranged on a three-per-floor basis, where each apartment enjoys its own vertical communication core. A central service area will run all the way up the tower, connecting the apartments and including facilities for installations, service staff entrances, etc. This organization scheme enhances the separation between formal main living areas and service areas, that will be fed through different access itineraries, something demanded by a society that needs to keep some of the features of a traditional way of life that is no more sustainable due to economics and land scarceness reasons. Every apartment has their main living areas directly overlooking the sea, while the secondary spaces have their views to the rear or the courtyard inside. By extruding each typology pile at different heights, the overall volume results in a dynamic complex, thus avoiding massification sense.
Experience & Involvement
Designated to the project as part of a small and focused architecture team, one of three architects on site. Assigned during the beginning of the construction phase, excavation of the basement level prior to casting the raft. Participation and involvement in the project during the construction phase, dissimilar towards the finishing stage of the project, raised opportunities to correct or address issues that were faced during the later stages of several other projects. With experience and familiarization with the architecture details and finishes in an earlier stage, coordination between services and other trades prompts less errors to occur. Additionally, at this stage of development, providing several opportunities to interact with designated sub-contractors and observe the installation and coordination of building services.