Masdar Headquarters Building. Courtesy Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architects
Thornton Tomasetti provided structural design, through construction documents, for a seven-story, 1.25 million-square-foot mixed-use building that could operate as net-positive — generating more electricity than it used.
The building’s primary “engine for sustainability” required an integrated architectural, structural and MEP design strategy. A 7,500-ton roof trellis carrying a seven-acre field of photovoltaic cells was supported by large curving cones that doubled as chimneys — allowing the building to “breathe” by enabling hot air to escape upward.
Calculating the project’s total embodied carbon required scrutiny of every ounce of building material, factoring in both their quantities and sustainable qualities. The design team met the challenge of identifying the best balance between functionality and sustainability by engaging in intensive collaboration during detailed initial studies to get the right mix.
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