Tag Archives: saudi arabia

Biophilia Essays: KAFD Parcel 4.11

KAFD4.11_perspectiveKAFD Parcel 4.11

The proposed façade of the building on Parcel 4.11 of the King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia is dramatically blanketed by a display of linear lights, which from a distance cohere into a single image. Considering the potential of the eight-storey feature, AWA proposed a number of possible alternatives to the status-quo, text-based functionality of typical billboards. The firm’s ideas included a “phases of the moon” project that would show visualization of Earth’s satellite, waxing and waning with the lunar cycle even while gradually moving across the face of the wall laterally. This realism of both cyclicality and side-to-side motion was motivated by, and sought to activate, the biophilic appeal of the moon as a source of light, security, and regularity for flora and fauna throughout human evolution. Extending the potential for biophilic imagery, AWA also proposed a creative design option displaying the “flight of the falcon,” a locally revered bird moving realistically across the face of the building.


A second aspect of the project afforded an opportunity for biophilic design: that of a 6-meter diameter custom light fixture to become the focal point of the building’s lobby space. AWA decided to create a moon chandelier, a 3-dimensional spherical matrix of spherical LED lights, again animated with the changing phases of the moon. In practice the fixture would at different times be darkened or illuminated in sections, with careful attention to the neatness (i.e. the lack of bleeding light) at the boundary between bright and dark. A series of diagrams for the custom fixture design can be seen below.


Biophilic Design

“Biophilic design” can refer to several trends in modern “green” design, but in most uses it indicates a design principle that goes beyond merely minimizing the impact of the built environment to create actual close contact between users and the “natural” world. By inviting nature into the design, whether through biomimicry, green curtain walls, extensive natural lighting (or simulations thereof), multi-species accessibility, or the like, a design reengages occupants with the environmental elements that may be inherently intertwined with our phylogenetic predispositions.

Top 10 most beautiful mosques from around the world

Floating Mosque, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Floating Mosque, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Sultan Omar Ali_Saifuddin Mosque, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei.

Sultan Omar Ali_Saifuddin Mosque, Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei.

Xining Dongguan Great Mosque, China.

Xining Dongguan Great Mosque, China.

Mosque being a place of worship for Muslims worldwide, typically incorporate traditional designs and a strict structure including a dome and minarets. But with the world turning to contemporary design, where does that leave classical mosque designs?
Globally, countless architects and designers showed us that sticking to the typical guidelines to designing mosques is not the only way of presenting this place of worship- mosques are also forms of architecture that can be interpreted through modern design.
10 most beautiful mosques from around the world to celebrate the beauty of Islamic design.

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Article Written by : Aidan Imanova

Image courtesy of : From Designmena

Source : Designmena

Top 10 skyscrapers to be completed in 2015


OKO South Tower, Russia, by SOM

The building from Moscow-City to make the top 10 is a 352-metre tower by skyscraper veteran SOM, whose portfolio extends from Chicago’s Willis Tower and John Hancock Center, to One World Trade Center and the Burj Khalifa. The OKO South Tower is one of two faceted skyscrapers underway on the site, connected at the base by a transparent crystalline structure. The complex will include a four-star hotel, offices and apartments..

Click HERE to read about other projects

Article Written by : Aidan Imanova

Image courtesy of : from Designmena

Source : Designmena

FXFOWLE looks forward to new contemporary developments in KSA

Museum of the Built Environment by FXFOWLE

Museum of the Built Environment by FXFOWLE


Having designed 10 buildings in the King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD), architectural firm FXFOWLE Architects is certainly setting the stage for upcoming developments on the 1.6 million square meter site, situated in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Ranging from mosques and museums to residential and office buildings, the New York-based firm was handpicked by Saudi Arabian real estate developer, Rayadah Investment Company, to deliver contemporary design solutions across its various projects. However, designing for a diverse Islamic country meant that the architectural team needed to educate themselves to understand the cultural and religious nuances that define the culture of Riyadh.

Amongst the first things Sudhir Jambhekar did when he found out they were designing a mosque in KAFD, was to send two architects to gather information from the imam at New York City’s largest mosque.“We had to undertake an intense research process in order to be able to philosophically understand meanings and the importance of certain rituals. From there we could attempt to present a modern re-interpretation in our designs,” explains Jambhekar, senior partner at FXFOWLE.

For example, when designing the residential and commercial towers on plot 5.05, one of the seven plots that FXFOWLE designed for, the architects were especially sensitive to the cross views that could arise from having the towers located at close proximity to each other. According to Jambhekar, the placement of the plot was such that the office building would look into the residential building. After a series of design innovations, the designers decided to have the building’s façade fitted with a thin layer of marble laminated on a panel of vision glass so as to direct views away from the residential building. As a result, on-lookers in the commercial building will be able to see a translucent wall on one end instead of peering into the residential units.

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Image courtesy of: FXFOWLE

Written By: Zeinab Saiwalla

Source: DesignMENA