How does the form of the building affect its structural system?
The inner conference and atrium space has a very different feel to the rest of the building. It is many stories tall, with a glass roof interlaced with structural steel beams. These are important in strengthening the building because the curved glass acts like the hull of a boat and is subject to many complex forces and behavior. The free-form, conch shell shaped structure that forms the conference auditorium is 29 meters long, 12 meters wide and 10 meters high. It is made from concrete in two halves. The floor of the atrium is also made from glass with interlaced steel at 80 cm centers and the interior enclosed space incorporates a lot of wood paneling.
As with the structural system, the HVAC system for most of the building would have been fairly straightforward to design. The heating and cooling system for the large interior space will have been an issue though purely because of its size. It is approximately 13,000 sq ft, meaning it makes up nearly a third of the building footprint. It is reasonable to assume that the heating system has been placed under the floor. On a hot day, the glass roof would
4. Structural System >