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Saturday, August 09, 2008

Farrer Road residential towers, Singapore, Singapore

Zaha Hadid designs largest residential development in Singapore
Zaha Hadid Architects have unveiled the design for 7 high-end 36-storey residential towers and twelve villas on a 838,488 sq ft site at Farrer Road, Singapore. The chosen site is strategically positioned within the residential area of Singapore, close to the amenities of Holland Road and the future MRT station. The absence of high rise buildings in the near surroundings and direct connection to the main traffic route of Farrer Road make this a prestigious and highly visible site across the whole city.

Hadid’s proposal for the Farrer Court site is generated by the study of the existing alignments and the main axis surrounding the site, which are incorporated and connected to generate a series of construction lines highly connected to the neighbourhood. The ground landscape level is visualized as a green layer, emphasizing the presence of florid vegetation in Singapore’s climate. The site levels are re-organized into a series of terraced plateaus to maximise the area dedicated to communal site amenities. The orientation and placement of the buildings is optimized in relation to the local environment as well as to maximize views out towards the surrounding city and landscape.

Zaha Hadid commented:”We have been working in Singapore for almost a decade and the Farrer Road development is a continuation of our detailed research into the urban fabric of the city. The seven tower development on one of Singapore’s most prominent sites represents further exploration into the tower typology and our studies into organisational systems and growth in the natural world. The towers are subdivided into petals according to the layout of each level to form a series of diverse and distinctive towers.”

Each of the 7 towers reach 150 m, growing from sunken private gardens within the site landscape. The lower floors kink to highlight the point where buildings meet the ground, reducing the footprint and enabling a greater open area at the base. This creates highly private gardens which are quite unique given the scale and density of the development. The towers are subdivided into petals according to the number of residential units per floor. The petals are expressed in three dimensions thanks to vertical cuts which give definition to the buildings' façades and, at the same time, allow for cross ventilation of most of the flats.

The buildings culminate at the top with a series of fingers stepped at different heights, which blend the transition between the architectural fabric and the sky. Through rotating the buildings across the site, and the careful use of balconies and façade panelling, a combination of self similar towers produce a diverse array across the development. Views to Bukit Timah Hill, Singapore Botanic Gardens, MacRitchie Reservoir and the Orchard Road city skyline are also optimised.

The £1.1 billion project is a CapitaLand-led consortium development; other partners include Hotel Properties Limited, Morgan Stanley Real Estate Special Situations Fund III, L.P. and Wachovia Development Corporation. It will be the largest residential development in Singapore’s history.

Laura Salmi
architecture NOW

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