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Architects, Engineers & Planners

O-14 office tower or Swiss Cheese Tower Dubai

An iconic office tower has become one of the first completed projects at Dubai’s Business Bay since the financial crisis.
The O14 development took over four years to build and is one of few projects to be formally opened at the site.

O14 or O-14 is an office skyscraper located in Business Bay in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is 102 m (335 ft) tall and has 23 floors. The building’s floor area is 300,000 sq ft (28,000 m2). There is a 1 meter space between the facade and the windows which allows hot air to rise and cool air to come in from below. The facade is 40 cm thick and made of an extremely fluid concrete. It has 1000 circular openings of various sizes. The building is held up by the core and exoskeleton so the space inside is largely column free. O-14 is the winner of the 2009 Silver, Emporis Skyscraper Award. O-14 also won the 2010 ACEC National Honor Award for Excellence in Engineering Design. O-14 was the recipient of the best tall building in Middle East and Africa in the best tall buildings awards by Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

O14_Tower_Dubai_Office_Building

New York based architecture firm, Reiser + Umemoto, entered an international design competition in which they lost the bid to world-renowned architect, Zaha Hadid. Yet, their entry was so compelling it earned them a separate commission in Dubai.
O-14 Tower is a unique and modern interpretation of commercial construction. The single most compelling attribute in the building’s design is its perforated concrete exterior. A “basket-weave” technique was used to create a steel reinforcement before the concrete was poured. The façade features over 1,300 holes in five different sizes. The sizes and placement of each hole was determined by differing structural requirements such as light penetration and view.

The building’s concrete shell is separated from an interior glass enclosure. By shielding the glass core from intense solar penetration the building was able to reduce energy consumption. The spacing from the main enclosure also allows hot air to escape the building’s exterior as a means of solar insulation.

O14_Tower_Dubai_Office_Building-cheese_tower

The column-less interiors allow for thousands of square-feet of flexible office space. Another differentiating factor from the surrounding commercial construction is the building’s parking, which was placed underground as opposed to at the ground level.

The O-14 office tower has been praised for its ability to adhere to a harsh desert climate without compromising building aesthetics.

images courtesy of © Reiser + Umemoto

information courtesy of © e-architect and Architectural Record

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