Saturday, 14 April 2012

Złote Tarasy (Golden Terraces)

Location: Warsaw, Poland
Client: ING Real Estate and the Warszawa Śródmieście
Architect: The Jerde Partnership International
Engineer: Arup 
Free Form Structure: Waagner Biro
Size: 10.200 m² steel and glass atrium enclosure
Costs: $500 million (the whole building)
Year: 2007

The site is one of the most prominent in Warsaw, located immediately adjacent to the main train station and the Palace of Culture in central Warsaw. The project contains office space, an entertainment centre, a shopping complex, and public spaces that make it a centre for urban activity in the city. Glass and steel roof covering the central shopping area was provided by Waagner Biro. Building on the steel node technology developed for the Great Court of the British Museum, the roof consists of an undulating geometrically complex net of welded steel elements supporting triangular glass panes. At the front side, the roof comes down to the ground, forming the main entrance to the complex and the primary connector between interior and exterior public spaces. 


Saturday, 18 February 2012


Location: Frankfurt, Germany
Client: MAB
Architect: Massimiliano Fuksas
Executive: Waagner-Biro Stahlbau AG
Structural Engineer: Knippers Helbig
Façade area: 8.500 m2
Roof area: 13.000 m2
Costs: 135,000,000 euro
Year: 2009

The MyZeil is a shopping mall in the city center of Frankfurt, designed by Roman architect Massimiliano Fuksas. It is part of the building ensembles PalaisQuartier and forms its access to the Zeil shopping street. Waagner-Biro was responsible for the roof and facade structure of building D which contains a shopping mall and a concert hall. The organic shaped roof is created with a triangular steel lattice and infill panels made of glass and metal panels. The rhombus structured façade part of building D includes a trumpet formed building part which connects the façade and the roof through the building.

The MyZeil has six floors, with one of the longest escalators in Germany (46 m). The gross floor under the vaulted, with about 3,200 triangular glass-based structure is 77,000 square meters, to retail in the bottom three floors account for about 52,000 square meters.

The structural design of the imposing steel and glass construction is by Knippers Helbig from Stuttgart. Rainwater from the nearly 6000 square meters large roof areas is collected, cleaned and returned to the water cycle of the house. Early 2008, the shell of the shopping center was completed and started the interior work.


Thursday, 9 February 2012

Guangzhou Opera House

Location: GuangzhouGuangdong province, People's Republic of China
Client: Gluangzhou Municipal Government
Architect: Zaha Hadid
Facade engineering: KGE Engineering (Zhuhai, China)Structural engineers: SHTK (Shanghai, China); Guangzhou Pearl River Foreign Investment Architectural Designing Institute
Construction management: Guangzhou Construction Engineering Supervision Co. Ltd. (Guangzhou, China)
Size: 70 000 m2
Costs: 220 milion $
Year: 2003-2010


Like pebbles in a stream smoothed by erosion, the Guangzhou Opera House sits in perfect harmony with its riverside location. The Opera House is at the heart of Guangzhou’s cultural development. Its unique twin-boulder design enhances the city by opening it to the Pearl River, unifying the adjacent cultural buildings with the towers of international finance in Guangzhou’s Zhujiang new town. The 1,800-seat auditorium of the Opera House houses the very latest acoustic technology, and the smaller 400-seat multifunction hall is designed for performance art, opera and concerts in the round. The design evolved from the concepts of a natural landscape and the fascinating interplay between architecture and nature; engaging with the principles of erosion, geology and topography. The Guangzhou Opera House design has been particularly influenced by river valleys – and the way in which they are transformed by erosion. Fold lines in this landscape define territories and zones within the Opera House, cutting dramatic interior and exterior canyons for circulation, lobbies and cafes, and allowing natural light to penetrate deep into the building. Smooth transitions between disparate elements and different levels continue this landscape analogy. Custom moulded glass-fibre reinforced gypsum (GFRC) units have been used for the interior of the auditorium to continue the architectural language of fluidity and seamlessness.

Just a year after opened to the public, large cracks have appeared in the walls and ceilings, glass panels have fallen from its windows, and rain has seeped relentlessly into the building. Many of the 75,000 exterior stone panels were so shoddily made that they are already being replaced.