The concept of the project is Habituation, which means adapting to a certain environment and blending with it. As Mexico is the center point of the capital city Addis Ababa, it is variant in its land uses and rich in diversity of activities. This includes mainly active commercial street fronts and some residential units in the middle. Therefore, our design aims to adapt to this environment and respond to the needs of the community in that specific site.
There are certain issues chosen as a downside of the site. This includes the lack of greenery around the plot area. Most of the land across a certain radius of the site is covered with concrete jungle which in turn creates a temperature rise, a very disturbing heat for the dwellers. The response to this problem was allowing wind to flow throughout the building to create well-ventilated spaces and facing the shorter side of the building mass to the direction of the harsh sun to allow freedom of openings in the rest of the building.
Consequently. the plot is situated on the corner of two major streets. One of the streets is active in commercial activities including shops, banks, residential condo units, street vendors, cafes/restaurants and parking lots. However, the second street is lifeless due to an existing police camp adjacent to it. People do not choose this road for walking or doing the activities listed above. Therefore, a 5-meter wide walkway was provided that crosses through the podium connecting both streets. This is to create a visual connection and allow the streets to blend and create a continuous flow of activities. This in turn lets the building be part of the societal enclosure.
The design is a High-rise apartment building located around Mexico, Goma kuteba site, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The overall plot area is 6,832.69 square meters. The building is composed of 43 floors including commercial(5 floors), office (2 floors), residential (33 floors) and basement/parking (3 floors). The residential units consist of six(6) housings per floor; 2 two bedroom apartment unit, 2 one bedroom apartment units and 2 three bedroom apartment units. In addition, there is a wide corridor space which connects them all to the two cores. The cores have three main programs; vertical circulation( lifts, staircase), bathroom, garbage shoot and utility room. Other services such as communal laundry and lobby area is provided on each residential floor. As the main goal of this design is to create a healthy and sociable living environment, there are some extra programs injected on two floors of the tower. These include gymnasium, swimming pool, spa, library, youth center and meeting room. Aside from their typical functions, these programs help facilitate the social interaction between the dwellers and in a bigger scale save them from travelling elsewhere to get these services
The office is composed of two floors. each consisting of three pool offices for serving different firms, Moreover, there are small offices for private use and food courts on each floor with its own kitchen and bathroom space. The office floors have a skylight at the middle letting natural light pass through them and in to the interior spaces.
The commercial floors are composed of several programs that enhance the spirit of the surrounding. The ground floor in particular has the most exposure to the outside. Therefore, it consists of banks, daycare center, garden space in the middle, cafes, shops pharmacy, super markets and it also has access to the underground parking area the upper floors have programs that seek some degree of privacy and require wider space. This includes hair salons, furniture shops, game zones, restaurants and machinery shops. The design of these commercial floors also has a skylight view and a roof garden at the top of the podium which functions as an outdoor café.
Furthermore, there are two penthouses at the top floors of the tower. each consist of luxury bedrooms and an outdoor swimming pool. their design is unique from the rest of the house units by having open floor plans which allows the residents to circulate freely and have more space for additional uses.
The 43-storey high-rise apartment is focused to address environmental safety features, structural stability, and adaptability of the building to the site. The structural components of the building are designed to resist any loads resulting from wind and seismic activities. A hex-grid frame structure holds the tower firm, while two core structures anchor it to the ground. The podium is supported by a concrete column and beam framing.
Furthermore, there are different zones for the building accommodating several dynamic spaces that create a healthy interior environment for the dwellers and also facilitate the working environment by enhancing the connection of humans to the natural outdoor space. The overall horizontal zoning of the building is divided into two three major activities including; residence at the top, office at the middle and commerce at the bottom.
Finally, critical emphasis was given to the available programs, special features, systems and adoptability base design and overall development, and application of construction systems for the high-rise apartment in the given site context. The unique façade design incorporates green balcony spaces surrounding the tower also acting as a barrier to excess heat coming from the outside.