External Reference
Irkutsk, Russian Federation
Project Year




External Reference as Architects

If one has never heard about Irkusk he would be surprised discovering is a 200.000 inhabitants city undergoing an incredible economy growth. Iirkusk is a small Russian city closer to Japan than to Europe wich is expanding its surface beyond the river and claiming for brand new and breaking through architecture.

Promoters entering the european EC market are more interested in being up to date than in selling local culture. They claim the right to take part in to the international economy and architecture could be the ultimate existence statement.

Weather: Irkusk is city with a continental climate with huge temperature excursions and a minimum of -20 C in winter. Most of public activities happen in conditioned indoor spaces and open air displacements are reduced to the minimum. This factor open an opportunity for the research on high intensity spaces where a great number of activities coexist in the same area.

Location and Position: From taylor made to pret a porter architecture The site is a 100 ha completely free piece of land facing the river on two sides and the highway bridge on its third side. Since there is no masterplan yet the skyscraper should be flexible to any kind of urbanization and adaptable to any part of the site.

We proposed to locate our bulding at the end of the highway bridge which connects the existing city with the site in order to generate high concentration and link the old with the new.

Intensity: In our proposal the surface of four traditional skyscrapers is gathered in one single building in order to achieve the maximum of intensity and concentrate a large amount of activities as shops, services and events. The building, converted in a vertical city, reduces long outdoor displacemets offering a bioclimatic controlled environment.

Program: More then a specialized district the buildings is a 24 hours open pole which combines dwellings, commerce, offices and services.

Section The extrusion of the floor ring forms the building volume and define the central courtyard while the huge openings on the facade generate wide terraces accesible from the offices and dwellings. Due to the reduced ring thickness the building appears deep and thin at the same time revealing the inside courtyard. The central void is covered with a light transparent skin. Different activities are distributed in vertical in order to produce differentiation rather than segregation.

Circulation The ring shape in plan allows to locate a continuos distribution corridor wich give access at any point of the floor. An interior circulation corridor works as internal circulation for both offices and houses. Three vertical cores contain evacuation stairs and elevators and are connected to the main circulation corridors.

GF activation The poligonal wide footprint allow to host more activities on ground floor than in a conventional skyscraper and estabilish an intense relationship with the surrounding while the inside courtyard works as a open public space directly connected with the commercial spaces at ground floor. Three large openings on the facade skin allow easy access to the central courtyard.

Hight dept and low thickness When a building reach a critical mass its depth increase generating dark areas and ventilation problems. In order to reduce this effect the volume of the building is folded around a central void doubling the exterior surface. The ring plan allow to divide both house and office surface according to clients needs. Offices or houses from 50 to 1000 sqm can be arranged on each floor.

Facade The glass facade give maximum transparency and light transmission.

Sustainability The reduced thicness of the building allow cross ventilation through floors surface while ths central courtyard works as an extractor of hot air. The openings on courtyard roof can be regulated in summer and winter in order to control the flow of hot air. The holes in the facade are designed according to sun radiation at different hours of the day and let natural light enter inside the courtyard. At the same time the holes reduce the shadow of the building on the ground.

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Project Credits
School of Plastic Arts Oaxaca
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School of Plastic Arts Oaxaca

Oaxaca, Mexico - Build completed in 2008
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