Basf (Corporate Renewed) by Juan Carlos Baumgartner
2012 - 2013, Golden A' Interior Space and Exhibition Design Award Winner
We take into account the importance of research and technology and we include both in our method of thinking and working, always seeking SUSTAINABLE solutions which not only RESPECT the environment but which help to improve our surroundings.
The BASF corporate offices are situated on Insurgentes Sur, in Colonia Ciudad de los Deportes, Mexico City. The ground floor is of 1,315.0 m2 and each standard floor of approximately 942.0 m2. The shape has three differently-oriented squares brought together by a central core. BASF's corporate office project consists of the ground floor and 6 levels, the second floor will be for leasing and the first floor will be developed in the future. The design program for the other floors includes spaces such as a lobby, open and private offices, meeting rooms, a dining room, rooms for informal or casual meetings, an auditorium, support areas and sites. A requirement of the client was to achieve LEED certification, so the design had to incorporate maximum parameters of energy efficiency and sustainability. On the ground floor there is a showroom for the display of the company's own products with the facilities to project images of the different products on screens. Also located on this floor is the reception area which has a staple with a stone finish and the BASF logo on the back wall. With its waiting area and turnstiles with scanners giving access to users, it will service the entire building. Restrooms are divided into two parts, one for the meeting rooms and the other for the dining area, executive dining room and showroom. They will have everything to serve the needs of the customer with water-saving equipment which will help consumption. As this equipment has its own water treatment plant for used water, it will have a second use generating water for the air conditioning. There is a public space with meeting rooms, two of which will have a movable wall making it possible to use the space in a different manner. The small rooms have audio-visual equipment and a wall mounted screen and the large rooms have projectors and electric screens. The executive dining room on this floor has three separate rooms with movable walls that can be made into one when the space is needed. The general dining room serves 100 people in two shifts, and this space will have a shared use, as an auditorium as it also has projectors and screens on columns. It features an audio cabin and store for tables and chairs, the latter being in the same space as the kitchen which has on-site food preparation. It has an office area and a space for medical services, a lactation room and an ATM. The pedestrian entrance to the building has ramps allowing access to disabled persons in wheelchairs. The smoking area is in the same area, designed to have lower visual impact, so only the floor finish changes. There are bicycle racks in this floor’s parking lot, and there are showers for bicycle users on basement 1 with others to be found in the roof gym. The racks and the garbage can for separation and recycling are requirements of the building certification. The floors second to the sixth could be called standard floors, whose three wings are comprised of open areas, except for the sixth floor where the presence of the chairman’s office results in more private offices. These floors have a closed printing room with extraction as well as a stationery storage cabinet, enclosed phone booths consisting of a seat and a telephone line for private telephone conversations between two or more people. These floors also have meeting rooms, mainly for 4 to 8 people, which will be equipped according to need and size with projectors and screens. There is also a janitor’s room in the emergency stairwell, for storage and cleaning facilities. A distinguishing feature of these floors is the informal meeting space, strategically located to serve coffee and water, so that people to gather casually and watch presentations run from a laptop set on a table. The screen is wall-mounted or suspended from the ceiling as appropriate. Each informal meeting space is decorated with a different theme, in order to bring something special to each floor. Low partitions between the workstations allow us to create a sense of spaciousness. Unlike the ground floor where the ceilings are either smooth or in a grid, these floors have shim plates and a center soffit grid, creating more movement and depth as you can see the slab behind. The meeting rooms also have a smooth ceiling and a center ceiling grid holding recessed lighting, diffusers and movement detectors, plus other features. On the sixth floor, the directors’ area has a smooth drywall ceiling with recessed linear luminaries with louvers; these fixtures will have different intensities and scenarios. The elevator lobby will have a smooth ceiling and a light box along its length to round off each wing of the building. The lighting designer’s proposal for the open areas is to have randomly suspended luminaires at two heights, adding a touch of versatility as this form of lighting provides for greater uniformity of lighting throughout the space. The air conditioning works with Fan & Coils which enables us to make as much use as possible of the ceiling space, and thereby to give a greater sense of space to each location. DESCRIPTION OF FINISHES A reticular carpet was chosen for all the open spaces on the standard floors of the BASF corporate building. This has a distinctive design and the corridors have solid color accents. The carpet has acoustic and cleanliness benefits that help to create a much more comfortable space. It is also used in meeting rooms and private offices, which have a distinctive color and design. The print rooms, phone booths and stores have sober colored ceramic floors. The janitor’s rooms also have ceramic floor and wall finishes. The restroom floors and walls have ceramic tiles which create a much more pleasant space and there is a contrast between the different tones of the floors and walls. The surfaces and toilets are marble, adding a cutting-edge touch, as do the electronic mixer taps and the blank dividing walls. The informal meeting spaces will have different shapes and materials. It is proposed that some should have concrete color plaster walls. In order to create a different feeling others will have walls finished with white oak panels, or wood veneer and yet another will have a wall based on steel cables with acrylic screens to partition the spaces. These are a few of the informal meeting space highlights. Some of these spaces will have accents or rugs, while others will have with polished concrete or wood finishes which distinguish one space from another visually. The ceilings of the open areas are made from suspended smooth drywall with shim plates of different shapes which hold ceiling grids. Toward the external facades there ceiling edge feature will help to hide the blinds and will also hide the existing beam structure from external view. The ceiling will be smooth in all meeting rooms, printing rooms and phone booths which in turn have a central ceiling grid. Directors’ private offices have smooth ceilings and recessed linear luminaires, which create a much more modern space. The wooden doors in white oak with aluminum strip frames lend a sense of minimalism. The glass frontages of meeting and directors’ rooms are used to their best advantage; there is a modulation of the glass frontage which depends on the height with a color film across the whole of the upper part of the frontage and this color varies according to the floor. The sheets of glass butt tightly against each other and are placed over 1 ½" anodized natural color aluminum. Nearly all walls will be drywall with painted finishes as appropriate with a thermo-acoustic seal at the point at which they butt with the slab. In the corridors in front of the elevators the marble is replaced with a different surface in a special configuration. White oak panels lend these corridors a sense of luxury also giving the space a natural touch. All ground floor corridors are marble and the meeting rooms and executive dining rooms are carpeted. The storage office, security, telephone booth and kitchen have the same ceramic tiles as the toilets. Finally, the public dining area has a distinctively designed vinyl floor. All areas of the ground floor have a smooth ceiling with some accents in the center of the spaces. The general corridors have light boxes giving indirect light to accentuate the placement or alignment of spaces, and the showroom has some lines at different angles which illuminate the space. In the stairways and basements, the existing walls were painted while the handrails and light fittings were repaired. All safety features, lines on floors, walls and columns were repainted. The existing damaged doors in the basement were all replaced. DESCRIPTION OF THE FAÇADE An energy analysis was carried out for the main façade, which is hard hit by solar radiation, before the specific plate glass characteristics were chosen (Solarban 70 glass). On this façade the sheets of glass are suspended in aluminum frames which in turn are attached to each slab, creating a horizontal line in each mezzanine, to which a sunshade was fastened, helping to decrease solar radiation. Looking at the front of the façade, each floor has a protruding sheet of glass, which, as part of the design, gives the feeling that the front is floating and on the flat roof of this façade the glass protrusion continues across the whole building, creating the same sensation. The sunshade covers a little over 50% of the length of the main façade, and ends in an "L" shape with a wall, giving the entire façade a visual feature. Blue tinted sheets of glass surround the showroom on the ground floor and they continue as a railing on the first floor terrace, framing the building access very distinctively. Planilux glass is envisaged for the rear façade, a much simpler glass but one that meets the requirements. It is held in place by a 1" frame with supports between each unsealed glass to glass union providing a compact and functional solution since the greater proportion of concrete on this façade makes it possible to specify a type of glass with these characteristics. The building’s exterior finish is concrete with a particular type of concrete plaster to give a newly built appearance. With the idea of lending color and modernity to the building, the full height of the North wing was covered with Trespa coated panels These panels will have different hues based on the BASF pantone colors to give this element a unifying concept. The offices are designed with operational and design sustainability in mind owing to their low energy consumption, lighting levels and standardization of materials.
Design Challenges
Juan Carlos Baumgartner did not encounter any design challenges while designing the award winning Basf Corporate Renewed.
Production Technology
Design was made in 2011
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