Currently under construction, Otunba Offices, a new low-cost and sustainable office building in Lagos, Nigeria received international recognition at the 2017 Architectural Review MIPIM Future Projects Awards in Cannes, France. Otunba Offices designed by Domaine Public Architects was awarded a commendation by the international jury in the “Offices” category.
“We are honored that a sustainable office project garnered international attention setting a standard for innovative sustainable construction in Nigeria,” said Karim Fakhry, international principal at Domaine Public architects. “The Otunba project truly serves as an affordable, sustainable model for construction in fast economic growth settings. It emphasizes economical sustainable concepts easily replicated with minimal financial impact on project budget.”
The MIPIM Architectural Review Future Projects Awards recognize planned or incomplete projects across 12 categories. The “Offices” category features projects that enhance their context and immediate environment and allow for productivity to flourish in the workplace. The awards were assessed by an international jury chaired this year by Paul Finch, editorial director of The Architectural Review and The Architects’ Journal.
The Otunba Offices project serves as a spatial massing prototype that can be configured on various sites. An innovative manipulation of the 1916 New York zoning regulation. “The reverse setback strategy can be modified according to specific site constraints. Rather than serve as a model for maximizing built up area with a receding floorplate, the reverse approach emphasizes a minimized footprint and expanding upper floors.” explains Karim Fakhry. The massing approach allows a minimum built up area on the ground level and hence maximum public space. This allows for extensive viable communal areas on the scale of the neighborhood and city and establishes inter-neighborhood connections and expansive multi-purpose outdoor areas for social interaction.
The awarded project emphasizes economical sustainable concepts easily replicated with minimal financial impact on project budget. With a reduced building footprint (less than twenty percent of horizontal coverage), the natural landscape is preserved. Unbuilt surfaces allow for excess rainwater absorption and the expansion of lush gardens. The innovative massing transforms the building into a volumetric brise-soleil. The project responds to specific site orientation and naturally shades itself from the tropical sun on the western and southern façade. A dual layer of vegetation, flexible louvers and natural ventilation based on site orientation minimize the project’s ecological footprint and the reliance on mechanical systems for cooling.
“This is an exciting community project that we hope will set the standard for sustainable future development” said Mansfield Developers CEO Helen Oshinusi. “The building is truly unique and its impact will hopefully be felt not only in the immediate neighborhood but across the capital.”
Abour Domaine Public Architects
Domaine Public Architects was founded in 2012 by graduates from Harvard University. A diverse portfolio of work includes projects in the United States, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Spain, Mexico and the Middle East. Projects range from galleries, apartments, private houses, hotels, to large scale residential projects and master-plans. The practice is driven by an analytical approach, rather than a specific architectural style. Domaine Public Architects creates spaces derived from the specificity of context, historical precedent, and an understanding of functional needs.