Project Details: Tender submission for Singapore Red Cross Head Quarters, Singapore, Feb 2017.
Key Role: Tender submission management and designer, design research, sketch design.
In Singapore, it is a rare opportunity to work on a conserved live building in a site directly above the underground transport tunnels whilst integrating the existing building with a new development to meet the needs of change and progress. It is even more promising that the challenge needs to balance the new development with an image of simplicity and thrift befitting a charitable organisation like Red Cross.
Our design approach is in the same vein. Riding on a functional layout, uncomplicated structures and an image of unadorned simplicity, the proposal consciously skirts the costly options of piling over the existing underground tunnel zones. We have combined a raft foundation over the underground tunnel zones and restricted piling works to only outside the zone. The building orientation is deliberately North/South facing for the long side to reduce heat gain and be environmentally eco-friendly and energy conscious. We have endeavoured to keep the side passages of the lift core naturally ventilated whilst complying with the protected fire-fighting lobbies and a pressurised scissor stairs. For the typical floor, the lift core is located outside of the underground tunnel zones. With the vertical circulation centralised with the common toilets and M/E shafts, two wings of office space are freed up on each floor on either side of the lift lobby for flexible internal use. The building layout literally grew out of the site constraints and transforming them as opportunities.
On the lower floors, a 3 storey podium is proposed as a mirroring response to the existing and odd site configuration. Urban farming is proposed as a green response to promote practical building landscaping.
Mindful of the existing conservation building, a physical link is proposed on all three levels between the new and existing. This will give a clear sense of arrival for ground level visitors to the respective lobbies.
Ambulance accessibility and clear vehicular circulation are carefully considered.
For the conserved building, less is more. The building will remain essentially the same externally with the exterior spruced up. The interior space will however undergo an exciting transformation to meet the functional needs of lounge, office meeting rooms and presentation hall.
The Red Cross mission is humanitarian with a lot of heart for others. This proposal is designed to be porous and visible on the ground level and its two tower wings are like 2 symbolic arms cantilevering over the conserved main building to continue its bold humanitarian service to mankind.