BIG proposes tensile canopy for secret Middle East project


Following up on our story about New York studio Rex’s retractable mashrabiya design planned for an undisclosed location in the Middle East, competition entries for the mysterious media headquarters project continues with BIG’s entry.

BIG’s scheme aims to provide the vast media headquarters a framework for international broadcasting that also remains grounded in local culture with a 650,000m2 project.

The design consists of two cuboid towers encouraging communication among the occupants of the building. With the intention of maximising interaction, a vertical village of newsrooms and broadcast studios is joined beneath a tensile canopy that unifies the staff and visitors.


Within this ‘valley’, the podium as well as the storeys above, form a shared space for informal relaxation, while private roof terraces can be used by staff working on the higher floors of the building. Shared amenities are also included within the scheme such as dining facilities, a gym, a bank and an auditorium.

Although the project has created a common base, internal programs are assigned to specific location for privacy.


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