Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Structure and Construction

Each of the 5 buildings in this square have an almost completely different structure. which makes the site very interesting and stops it from being just another office block in london. some consistency between the buildings would have been nice as the only thing they all have in common is that they have overhangs or covered areas where the front doors are. This covered area is reflective of the British weather and will allow people time to put up umbrellas or button up coats before going out in the rain. this covered area is also where everyone stands and smokes, which isn't very nice.
This is the covered area of Building 1, people use it to walk through undercover from the office doors to the cafe on the corner, although this office has its own canteen inside so many people stay in there all day. the cafe puts tables and chairs here as well which must be nice in the summer. the building has a metal structure over the whole outside of the building, wood and glass are also used. the buildings main foundations are then built up with very large steel girders.

Building 2 also has a covered area that a cafe uses for outside eating but concrete and stone make up a less complicated rectangular structure over the glass windows. the use of a grid and the fact the the floors are at the same height in all the buildings does make building one and two fit together well.

This is building 3, which is the smallest and lowest of all the buildings but it is also the most modern and futuristic looking. it is used as offices for the site management and security and also the access to the underground car park. the building uses steel, stainless steel and glass and also feature an overhang over the front door. the wall exposed to the outisde of the square, is a 'green' wall which has plants growing out of it. the rest of the walls are either glass or covered in sheets of stainless steel. there are no curves in any of the buildings and this is probably one of the reasons for the curved grass area in the centre of the square and the natural flowing water.

this is the view down between building 3 and 4. building 4 has an all glass exterior , and this is made by having an internal structure and then the glass basically hangs on the outside, then there is some exterior structure showing made of concrete on the upper floors. this building has one of the largest floor plans and, along with building 5, contrasts with buildings 1 and 2 well when you compare their structures.

This photo shows building 5 in the forefront and then building 4 in the background. This shows how these two buildings are quite similar apart from that building 4 has slight accents of structure on the outside. on the outside of the square these two buildings have very different looks, with large wooden and metal structure over the front of the smooth glass. the glass works well with the British weather as it is a very similar colour to the sky and the rain and when it does rain it cleans the self cleaning glass.

This is building 5 on the left and building 1 on the right. Building 5 is a completely glass sheet on the outside, for 17 storeys. the glass isn't part of the supporting weight at all as there is an internal structure of concrete and steel. the other side of this building, that you cannot see in this photo, is very structural and has an exterior very similar to building one apart from it uses more wood, or metal that looks like wood. And in contrast the walls on the outside of the square of buildings 1 and 2 are very smooth, made up of glass and small sections of steel and concrete structure.

This is the view, looking up between buildings 5 and 1, it looks like a complete exo-skelton and also shows the relationship between the two buildings, as well as the simplicity of straight lines. The buildings are all unique, but they also work well together in a square. all the buildings are built in the usual 'office block' way and with the most modern 'office block' materials, steel, glass, concrete etc. the surfaces used in the site bounce off of each other and create interesting relationships and very interesting textures in different weather and seasons.

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