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» » REX Clads Media Headquarters with Retractable Sunshades
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By Luxigon

As the sun tracks across the sky, the entirety of the building’s western façades transform image by luxigon

New york-based architecture office REX has developed the conjoined headquarters of two middle eastern media companies. the brief from the sister organizations calles for two elegant structures that pay homage to traditional emirati architecture, while satisfying their programmatic demands. Starting with a long slender precedent – approximately 100 m x 22 m (328 ft x 72 ft) – the design team seeks to simultaneously accommodate offices alongside smaller broadcasting and news studios.

The towers’ elevations can ‘blossom’ in less than a minute image by luxigon

In order to house the complete program within the narrow footprint, volumes are stacked vertically with the large studios, which are unable to fit within the thin towers, positioned below ground. providing external views and generous amounts of daylight, common areas of the design are contained within the lower region of the structures where an exposed ‘X-ray’ effect reveals their internal functions.

Common areas of the design are contained within the lower region of the structures image by luxigon

Shielding the building from the region’s hot sun, the building’s elevations are clad in large retractable sunshades. their geometry references a traditional arab mashrabiya pattern, infusing the project with references to local craft. during the evenings the shades are withdrawn, revealing simple, stone-clad towers with floor-to-ceiling glazed windows. As the sun tracks across the sky, the entirety of the building’s western façades transforms, while the eastern elevations simultaneously retract within 60 seconds. Powerful LEDs integrated within the sunshades create an enormous 220 m x 220 m (722 ft x 722 ft) media wall, broadcasting the companies’ content in real-time.

The large studios unable to fit within the thin towers are positioned below ground image by luxigon

Typical office space with sunshades in operation

During the evenings the shades are withdrawn

In order to house the complete program, volumes are stacked vertically

The shielding screens measure 14.5 meters in diameter

Beneath the canopies, simple, stone-clad towers with floor-to-ceiling glazed windows are revealed

Powerful LEDs integrated within the sunshades create an enormous media wall

Site plan

The simple tower slabs create a huge sunscreen for the surrounding landscape

Select western umbrellas are retracted in response to building shadows, while eastern umbrellas are deployed

Select eastern umbrellas are retracted in response to building shadows, while western umbrellas are deployed 

Typical floorplans within the tower

Section highlighting the scheme's program 

Tower 1 common space

Tower 2 common space

Each structure features 14.5 meter sunshades 

The design references a traditional arab mashrabiya pattern

Sectional construction detail 

FEM wind load analysis under pressure and suction 

Source: Designboom

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