Renaissance Tower


Designed by New York-based architecture firm FXFOWLE, Renaissance Tower is the headquarters for a construction and development company in Instanbul, Turkey’s largest city. With sustainability well and truly on the agenda, the tower has an ambitious target of LEED Platinum – the highest rank in the international rating system.

“Rooted in the particular spirit of Istanbul, the tower offers an antidote to the universal application of conventions without regard to locale, which has unfortunately become the norm in many emerging global cities,” adds Dan Kaplan, senior partner at FXFOWLE.

The site

Occupying a prominent site at the intersection of two major highways, the tower is said to function “like an obelisk” marking the end of a long vista and signifying the entrance to the city from the east.

Standing at 185 metres, the Renaissance Tower will be the tallest building on the Anatolian (Asian) side of Istanbul upon completion next year.

The building is orientated to maximise solar efficiency and minimise East – West solar gain.

The concept The design is said to be guided by a combination of “cultural responses and sustainable innovation”. The chiseled massing takes cues from Ottoman geometric motifs and local landforms while also adhering to the municipal envelope restrictions.

The tower is rotated 33 degrees for optimum solar control as determined through isolation modeling. A stippled golden scrim, varied in density according to solar orientation, further reduces heat load. These measures validate the use of floor-to-ceiling glass.

The details Three groupings of two-storey-high sky gardens are placed at key exposures. As well as acting as a thermal buffer between the exterior and interior, the gardens provide access to fresh air and offer a break area for office workers. A larger exterior garden crowns the tower and contains a wood conference ‘pod’.

Other green measures include heat recovery via heat exchanging wheels, blackwater treatment, low-flow fixtures and the use of recycled materials.

The base features a water garden reflecting the tower and sky, a step garden allowing access to a pavilion roof, and a social piazza. “These green spaces temper the insistent vertical stacking and hermetic environments so often found in high-rise design,” adds Kaplan.

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