In the realm of architectural design, the days of straight lines and glass facades are nearly extinct. Today’s skyscrapers and structures are proving that they are aesthetically unique, both in the developer’s choice of materials and blueprint designs. With so many contemporary and cutting edge buildings making headlines, here are 3 modern commercial building designs that currently match the innovation.
Many contemporary buildings look their best when they incorporate mixed materials in their design. The mix of masonry, architectural panels, trim, and other aesthetics is what makes a building stand out in the crowd. For instance, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai is made of concrete and steel, but it was also built with other major materials such as glass, silicone, and aluminum, which make up the outside façade of the tower. In massive structures like the Burj Khalifa, the concrete used in construction must be able to withstand the thousands of tonnes bearing down on it.
The exoskeleton concept was originated to maximize the amount of open floor space within a building. This unique architectural design can be found in buildings like The One construction in downtown Toronto.
Developed by Sam Mizrahi’s of Mizrahi Designs, the distinctive 85-storey residential and retail tower is situated on the corner of Yonge and 1 Bloor Streets and features the signature exoskeleton form. The shapes are far from aesthetic flourishes, they are actually part of the building’s structure. The hybrid exoskeleton places the bulk of The One’s structural support system on the tower’s exterior, transferring the tower’s weight to the ground by way of eight super columns grouped in four pairs, each supporting one side of the building. This will allow for the construction of wide-open, naturally-lit floor plans on the building’s interior, created by not having to build structural columns or walls in the units.
The Tower Verre in New York employs the same exoskeleton technique. Architect Jean Nouvel, is behind the project.
High-rise buildings are often designed in the form of rectangular blocks with glass exteriors. These kinds of buildings are practical, but yet somewhat boring to the eye. Contemporary architects are trying to change this by erecting “iconic” buildings, which are distinguished by their shape and scale. In the future, skyscrapers may be designed with more aerodynamic and curvilinear shapes and forms. Additionally, geometric solids like cones, cylinders and spheres, may appear as components of modern buildings.
Take a look at Chaoyang Park Plaza in China which was designed by MAD architects and uses unique geometric shapes to form the building’s exterior.
While traditional architecture still has its place in construction, it is fun, fresh colors, contrasting lines and new angles that will mold contemporary building design in the future.