- Sustainable Architecture
- UC Innovation Center by ELEMENTAL Cile
ELEMENTAL - a company in partnership with the Chilean oil company (COPEC) and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, has designed the UC Innovation Center in Santiago de Chile, on the San Joaquin Campus of that university. Angelini Group donated the money to create a centre that brings together academic research and industries to successfully share and develop ideas, and this project is the end product.
Highly innovative architecture that the architects say required an approach combining something useful - energy saving - with something enjoyable, i.e. the aesthetics.
By no means an easy task if we think of the glass and steel towers on the Chilean capital's skyline seen as a sign of progress and that consume lots of energy for climate control, given that they are like a greenhouse inside.
The UC Innovation Center by ELEMENTAL aims to combine sustainability and visual impact with a structure made from blocks of bare reinforced concrete - a really grey monolith on the campus. The concrete creates the thermal mass required to stabilise interior temperatures, the recessed windows restrict the entry of direct light, thus avoiding the need for sun blinds or curtains, while the research spaces open inwards to the creative heart of the structure, constructed around the full height central lobby.
It has all been designed to encourage personal interaction and relations, with details like benches at the lifts to sit and chat when you meet someone, and share ideas in comfort.
The result is an austere-looking, linear, timeless exterior with proven sustainability, lowering energy consumption from the usual tower consumption of 120kW/m2 a year to just 45kW/m2 a year
The UC Innovation Center by ELEMENTAL has been nominated as one of the 15 “Designs of the Year 2015” by the london Design Museum.
Project: ELEMENTAL Chile, http://www.elementalchile.cl
Location: Santiago de Chile
Photography: Kim Courreges, Nina Vidic, Victor Oddo