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Monday, May 18, 2009

ION Orchard, Singapore, Singapore

Groundbreaking retail and residential project set to open in Singapore
Construction of the groundbreaking ION Orchard by Benoy is set to complete in Singapore, providing the city’s most expensive accommodation and a new visual icon for South East Asia. Providing Singapore’s first monocoque façade and canopy structure and one of the largest media walls in Asia, the design is a conquest in innovation in the East.

Over 400 shops and 175 ultra-luxe apartments, together with new public realms ensure the project is one of great significance to this central cosmopolitan district, situated at the junction of the Orchard Road, Orchard Boulevard and the Paterson Road-Scotts corridor.

At 218 m in height the Orchard Residences tower is set for completion in December while the retail centre and public realm will open in July when perhaps the most significant element of the design, the outer skin, will be complete. Inspired by the patterns and textures found in nature, Benoy has designed a fully three-dimensional free form curvilinear glass and metal façade to wrap around the retail component of the scheme. This large point-fixed glass structure includes the integrated media façade which has the potential to transform into one of the largest LED media walls in Asia. The design includes a large low resolution ‘seed façade’ and a smaller high resolution LED façade creating a new stage for public video screenings and advertisements. A double curved glass fully transparent Waterdrop has also been designed as an iconic MRT station entrance to the events space. The entire podium monocoque facade will be fitted with LEDs at each nodal point to illuminate the podium at night.

At the heart of the development sits a new 3,000 m2 public square. This new urban space will be a logical focal point for both large and small events – from festivals and shows to meetings and exhibitions. Other public areas include a 500 m2 art gallery and an observation deck.

Importantly, following the launch of Singapore’s sustainability blueprint in April, the project has received awards for its green credentials including BCA Green Mark Gold certificate from Singapore’s Building Construction Authority. ION Orchard was designed by Benoy with RSP Architects Planners & Engineers as the project architects.

Niki May Young
News Editor

architecture NOW

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