Case study: Doha Twin Towers

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This billowing twin tower project in Qatar was designed by GHD Global and is currently awaiting the go-ahead from an unnamed local developer. The scheme was designed to meet the client’s target net floor area ratio of 398%.

Overall water consumption will be reduced by 40% though the use of native plantation, water reducing fixtures, storm water re-use and grey water treatment strategies. The building also aims to produce 5% of its energy from renewable sources, such as photovoltaics, that are built into the shading system on the façade.

The site

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The scheme is located in Lusail, a new city that is being constructed 15km north of Doha city centre. Situated at the first main street junction in the marina district, the project will occupy one of the most prominent sites in Lusail.

A shading system, based on the Arabic mashrabiya, was devised through an analysis of shading patterns. This study also led to the provision of pedestrian connections with the marina boardwalk in order to animate the site.

The concept The massing concept of the towers and podium is based on a series of dhows on choppy waters. The podium is designed to resemble sea waves, with two sloping ribbed forms reflecting water ripples, and will contain commercial and retail spaces.

Commenting on project challenges, Brendan Texeira, concept architect, added: “We were faced with stringent urban planning guidelines which limited not only the tower footprint, but also the podium and tower heights. The challenge was daunting.”

The details Sky gardens are located across the main façade of each tower, offering communal spaces. A series of vertical shading elements follow the solar radiation pattern by progressively changing their angle and exposing more of the west façade.

Further sustainable solutions include carefully angled glazing to minimize direct solar radiation, as well as a composite sun shading handrail system. These shading strategies are said to reduce direct incident solar radiation on the facades by 70%.

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