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Mixed Use

This tag is associated with 5 posts

North America’s Most Sustainable Telecommunications Company Plan’s New LEED Platnum Headquarters

As North American telecommunications companies go, it is hard to find a company with better sustainability cred then TELUS. The firm made the decision to reduce its environmental footprint about 9 years ago, before sustainability was cool and embarked on a now decade long journey to lower it’s impact on the environment.

..everything from diesel generators and chemicals to batteries and pole storage. “As an incumbent telecommunications company, we’ve been around a long time, so we have older infrastructure in some areas,” says Joe Pach, Telus’s environment director. “We recognize the risk that that represents to us, so we’ve embarked on a program to upgrade these systems.  In the past, we have had people say to us, ‘Why are we even doing this? They’re not.’ [But] we can’t take that approach, because the risk to the company in terms of its public profile … is greater to us than the monetary risk of, say, a fine … TELUS wants to send a very clear signal to the investment community that we are a very well-managed company.” And there’s no better way to do that than taking care of all the small, green details. S.

It is all well and  good for a company to say that . it is a green company but the proof is in the details and TELUS has those to back it up.  TELUS has been ranked among the world’s leading companies on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for the past nine years. It is the only North American telecommunications company to make the list and one of only 11 Canadian businesses across all sectors included on the global index.S.

As part of its ongoing efforts TELUS has also being upgrading its corporate offices, Known as TELUS Houses, 3 so far have been renovated or constructed,  TELUS House Toronto and Ottawa were awarded LEED Gold, and TELUS House Quebec LEED Silver. For its new National Headquarters in Vancouver the company is aiming for LEED Platinum.  The $750-million, one-million square foot project will radically transform an aging downtown block into one of the most technologically and environmentally-advanced sites in the world

In the Company’s own words:

The million-square foot, $750 million project will see almost the entire block of prime downtown real estate bounded by Georgia, Robson, Seymour and Richards rebuilt into one of the most technologically and environmentally-advanced sites of commerce, employment and living in the world. It will create half a million square feet of much-needed new office space available for multiple tenants and 500 new residential units, all setting new standards for environmental sustainability. The 22-storey signature office tower will be the first building in Canada built to the new 2009 Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum standard and the 44-storey residential tower will be built to the LEED Gold standard.

“TELUS Garden will exemplify the TELUS brand and be a truly amazing destination for our team members, the community and the city,” said Darren Entwistle, TELUS president and CEO. “Our vision is that TELUS Garden will be a beautiful and unique location where leading-edge technology, urban living, environmental sustainability and tomorrow’s work styles are elegantly integrated into a vibrant community. This development, which will inject millions of dollars into our economy, will highlight TELUS’ advanced communications technologies and environmental innovation in a way never before seen. TELUS Garden will be a breathtaking place to live and work, an architectural icon that will consume 30 per cent less energy thanks to its responsible, leading-edge design. It will be a celebrated urban oasis that is literally alive with plant life and showcases our great province’s arts and culture.”


The landmark development reinforces TELUS’ commitment to the City of Vancouver, and will make a significant contribution to the city’s goal of becoming the greenest city in the world. Once complete, TELUS’ new headquarters will be unique in North America, featuring 10,000 square feet of green roofs providing organic produce for local restaurants, two elevated roof forests, British Columbia artwork, LED lighting on the western façade projecting programmable coloured images on to fritted glass, and media walls where cultural events such as symphony concerts can be broadcast to the public.

“The fact that TELUS is choosing to build a new national headquarters in Vancouver is a great vote of confidence in our local economy,” said Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Their proposal to build to LEED Platinum is extremely ambitious and sends a signal that in Vancouver, going green is good for business and the environment. I’m very excited that they are investing in Vancouver – we’ve worked hard to build a competitive climate for business, and when companies like TELUS choose to expand their presence it is great for creating new jobs and economic spin-offs in our city.”

TELUS has partnered with Westbank to lead the project, and has engaged Henriquez Partners as the architect that is designing the iconic development. TELUS will fund its share of the development predominantly through leveraging its existing real estate holdings in this block, coupled with the sale and lease of space in the new buildings. The investment is consistent with TELUS’ overall capital expenditure target for 2011 and longer term capital intensity goals. TELUS has just entered into an agreement to purchase the city-owned parkade at the corner of Georgia and Richards, consolidating the entire block, other than the Kingston Hotel, to create a unified development.

While I don’t envy guests of the Kingston Hotel during construction, when the dust settles the hotel will be better situated between two cutting edge and lively buildings instead of a pair of park aids. As an observer of the development landscape here in Canada I have been watching with interest to see what TELUS would decide to do after the company announced it was considering a new Headquarters. In Keeping with its previous property investments in Toronto, Ottawa and Quebec City, TELUS once again delivers an office building that looks forward and sees a city where “the future is friendly.”

First World – Mixed Use Residential New Songdo Style

The Sharp (The #) First World is one of the first completed residential projects in the New Songdo International Business District. The property was designed by international architecture firm KPF, and Korean firm Kunwon.  The project opened in January of 2009 with a lighting ceremony to celebrate the project and residents began moving in shortly after. The Sharp (The #) First World is a luxury apartment and office-tel mixed use development with ground floor retail services. In total there are: 1,596 Residential Units, 1,058 Office-tel Units and 294 Ground Level Retail spaces. The Sharp (The #) is designed to  house approximately 7,000 of New Songdo’s projected 65,000 residents as well as a health club, a daycare center, and a seniors’ center. The complex is located next to New Song Convention center and near the  Northeast Asia Trade Tower and River Stone Mall, it is also near on of several planned subway stops on the yet to be completed system.

As is common with hotly anticipated properties in Korea all of the 1,596 residential units sold out within the first two days they were listed on the market.  To read more about this phenomenon take a look at our article ‘Real estate lotteries, bidding wars, and tax audits in New Songdo’.

New Songdo has master plan that lays out a number of sustainable principals and The Sharp (The #) First world follows these principals. The overall plan is inspired by the pedestrian cities of Europe and North America and the design utilizes a pedestrian-scaled street grid, engagement with the street through the use of continuous street walls, and plenty of open space.

In order to challenge the perception of the super-block as a single “housing estate” as evidenced by the realization of the Radiant City paradigm in urban areas throughout the peninsula, FWT was conceived instead as being an assemblage of distinct communities. An analysis of Korean social hierarchy (the Ma-Ul, the Dong-Ne, and the Yi-Woot) informed the organization of the FWT into four courtyard communities each of which is subdivided into three neighborhoods of approximately 200 households.

The traditional Korean built environment also influenced the design, wherein circulation through palaces and gardens is characterized by repeated shifts in orientation and displaced axes. At the perimeter, gates and seven-story street walls provide a sense of enclosure, beyond which densely planted interior courtyards are viewed through large scale “urban windows”.

Displacement is also a theme at an architectural scale, where the ashlar patterns of traditional garden walls inspired the exterior wall articulation. The discontinuous lines of these surfaces break down the vertiginous effect of windows more characteristic of high-rise building, and in so doing reduce the apparent scale of the development.

The design for FWT further addresses the profound problem of scale associated with the super block typology by varying building heights in a rhythmic, nonlinear progression. Within the framework of the buildings, scalar elements such as large apertures, arcades, and pavilions assist in translating very large elements down to the scale of the individual. S

Fact Sheet

  • Occupancy: January 2009
  • 1,596 Residential Units, 1,058 Officetel Units and 294 Ground Level Retail
  • All Units Sold Out
  • Buildable Area: 5.7M SF/531,670 SM
  • 12 Buildings from 3 to 64 Floors
  • 4,892 Car Parking Garage
  • Architect: KPF/Kunwom
  • Contractor: POSCO E&C
  • Pursuing LEED for NC Certification

Gale International

3XN’s Landmark for Vällingby Parkstad

Our friends over at the always innovative 3XN firm have won the commission for a new mixed use building at the entrance to Vällingby Parkstad in Stockholm Sweden. The concave side of the tower is reminiscent of the Aqua Tower in Chicago with its undulating balconies but the rest of the building strikes out its own form.

The building’s curved design embraces the area, while the lively shaped balconies open the structure up towards the surroundings, seemingly drawing the park upwards into the air. The dense structure at the ground level adds activity at eye level, with further visual stimulation continuing upwards as seen in the active roof tops and flowering balconies.

The area’s traditional ABC-structures are functional and angular – a clear demarcation from the green park next to it. In contrast to this, the new building softly rises from the ground in a human movement. The North facing façade is smooth and plain, the South and West facing sides are curved in an embracing gesture. The design is also functional as its shape minimizes shadow effects on the surrounding areas.

The wave-like variation between floors comes from a repetition of four different shapes in the building.  This diversity adds dynamism and liveliness to the building, one which is further complemented by the individual touches that the tenants will bring through their furnishing and flower boxes of the balconies.

FACTS

Address: Vällingby Parkstad, Stockholm, Sweden

Client: Svea Fastigheter

Size: 13,000 m2 (14 floors)

1. prize in invited competition 2010

Construction is planned to begin 2011.

3XN

FACTS

Address: Vällingby Parkstad, Stockholm, Sweden

Client: Svea Fastigheter

Size: 13,000 m2 (14 floors)

1. prize in invited competition 2010

Construction is planned to begin 2011.

Welcome to Alpha Dome City

Welcome to Alpha Dome City ‘알파ㆍ돔 시티(αㆍdom city)’! It is a mixed use commercial and residential project that at first glance looks like one massive building. Alpha Dome City a project with an opening 5 trillion won (4.5 million US/CAD) price tag is under construction in Kyung ki do – sung nam si bun dang gu pankyo dong,  near the intersection of the Pankyo Expressway and the Seoul Outer Ring Highway. The project is by commission of the Pangyo Mutal Fund Administration in partnership with Lotte Engineering and Construction Consortium who will be the project manager for the Alpha Dome. Korean news puts the total number of companies involved in the consortium at 16. The project will have a mixed media centre (read movie theatre) department stores, (no doubt Lotte Department Store will make an appearance) discount stores, a hotel, galleries and other facilities, along with approximately 946 residential units. The project team indicates that the development will take lessons from Germany’s Sony Centre, and Le Defence, France.

The Korean National Housing Corporation will have a number of units in the development, indicating that the project will have a number of low cost rental units and housing for sale pursuant to the Korean National Housing Corporation’s mandate to  provide affordable housing to low-income households and also to stabilize residential property prices through the large-size housing supply.

알파 돔

In korean news a member of the project team explains the significance of the name: Alpha (α) as the first letter of the Greek alphabet ‘to No. 1’, ‘first’, ‘the light of the strong astronomical constellation of stars’,’ The most important part ‘, is central to the vision for the site. S

The Most striking aspect of Alpha Dome City ‘알파ㆍ돔 시티(αㆍdom city)’ is, well the Dome. The project is a number of commercial and residential blocks spread over a couple city blocks, with the dome as a pedestrian accessible linking structure. The dome with plans for cultural exhibition facilities in this ‘sky gallery’. The Dome itself with have multiple cuts through the roof structure to allow light to penetrate into street scape within. Inside the development preference will be given to bicycle and pedestrain traffic as the part of the new naturalism movement in Korea.  Special thanks to Chung Eun Young for research assistance.

The Rebirth of Fenwick Tower

Fenwick tower is getting an overhaul, the structure has been a part of the Halifax skyline since 1971 when the vision was to live in airy luxury, but the developer ran into financial difficulties.  A tower inspired by Le Corbusier that became the punching bag for the argument against development and intensification in downtown Halifax.

The website of its new owner Templeton Properties tells the tale:

Fenwick Tower is like no other building in Halifax.  The history of the building has become so rich that the building itself is talked about like an old friend. Fenwick Tower is an icon in the true sense of the word. Like many icons, the lines between truth and fiction have blurred to create a legendary story that is bigger than life and becomes a proud part of your living experience.

A web cam, a Wikipedia page, and being the subject of many news stories, Fenwick is a modern piece of Halifax’s history and culture.

From when the doors opened in 1971, the legend of Fenwick began.  Originally designed as a luxury apartment building, the developer faced financial problems halfway into the project and was forced to sell.

Dalhousie University purchased the incomplete building, finished the development, and offered Fenwick Place apartments to mature and married students, a better alternative to dorm-living. For 38 years Fenwick served as home to thousands of students, many who have moved on to become the leaders in our community.

n 2009 Templeton Properties purchased Fenwick Place and, following the community’s lead, officially re-named it Fenwick Tower.  Finally, Fenwick Tower has come full circle and will be open to the public as it was originally intended.

The developer used dotmocracy which bills itself as a large group decision making  process, and it looks like it turned out some pretty great ideas.

Dotmocracy is an established facilitation method for collecting and prioritizing ideas among a large number of people.

It is an equal opportunity & participatory group decision-making process.

Participants write down ideas and apply dots under each idea to show which ones they prefer. The final result is a graph-like visual representation of the group’s collective preferences.

We’re pleased to share our vision for Fenwick Tower, and exciting plans for the future redevelopment of this landmark structure in the heart of Halifax.

Since its opening in 1971, Fenwick Tower has gained an iconic status as the tallest building within Atlantic Canada. With this redevelopment initiative we will transition both the existing tower and adjacent lands to align with the future development standards of the Halifax Regional Municipality. The Result being a revitalised urban community.

The design of the new tower adds a glass shell to the existing tower and fills in the property at street level with an addition that reshapes the building address Fenwick Street instead of standing back from it the way that it does now. There will be two additional 10 and 8 story buildings added so to give the building a less sudden effect on the skyline and intensify the property. Another major design element is the new pedestrian corridor that meanders around the bases of the three buildings creating a meandering walkway that encourages you to explore. Restaurants, shops and public art. The vision is for a network of local businesses and to connect the neighbourhoods that encircle the property.