Designed by Ian Ritchie Architects Ltd with ARUP for Base-MK.
The site is on the corner of Satpaeva Street and Dijrzinsky Street in Almaty, Kazakhstan, and forms part of the western edge of Republic Square. The design intention is to create a city centre focus and to make a major new contribution to the skyline of the Almaty.
We have designed the buildings as a smooth sculptural shell facing outward to the public sides of the site to the West, the North and the East. The patterning of ceramic frit on these glazed facades draws attention to the whole and blurs the distinction between floors, and is reminiscent of traditional Kazak rug patterns. Opaque diamonds, translucent triangles and clear glazed areas are created by the random ordering of 5 to 10 differently patterned rectangular sized glazed panels.
For the inner courtyard facades the design of the buildings and solar shading have taken inspiration from the effects of erosion on Charyn Canyon to east of Almaty. The vertical spacing and the outer edge of the solar shading varies, as seen when harder layers of sediment resist erosion more than the softer layers.
Cutting into and through the retail podium are public passages, light wells and an important covered central public space. The design of these elements has also been influenced by erosion caused by water.
The design maximises opportunities for natural daylighting and natural ventilation, and the tower locations allow direct sunlight in from the south and views of the Kailiysky Alatau mountains.
The Site area is 2.68 hectares, and the proposed mixed-use scheme’s built area is 315,000m2 consisting of 37,000m2 200 room Hotel / Conference, 30,000m2 Office, 35,000m2 Retail, a multi-screen cinema ,78,000m2 Residential, 65,000m2, 50,000m2 Public areas, Underground Car Parking, and 20,000m2 Plant and Servicing.
The design concept takes account of the altitude of the city (+850m) and temperature extremes (-30C to + 40C). The multiple uses on site create a balanced demand for heat, cooling and power to enable the efficient use of on-site tri-generation (Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plus absorption chillers) to meet the base load demand.
The mix of uses on site ensure that the area will be active and safe at all times of the day, and the number of residents and employees on the site will help sustain the retail. A mixture of uses on site provides a more stable long-term building investment than a single use.