Watercolor by Rafiq Azam
Blending with the City Landscape
This two-apartment block is “one of a kind” design by Shatotto responding to the new “building construction rules for Dhaka – 2006”. Such rules require a fifty percent mandatory free ground coverage and a maximum building height of 45.73 meter.
The agreement between the estate developer and the landowner has been to make two towers - one for the land owner and the other one for the developer. This sets off the first criteria of the design. The site facing two roads on the south and the west ensures the maximum day light round the year as well as intense wind flow during summer. since both the blocks are getting western daylight each day, protruded verandas and gardens evolved in the design to safeguard the window glasses to not let the heat seep inside the apartment.
In addition, to avoid the afternoon low stretched sun to enter inside the room, gardens placed in such a way in every level as to panel the sun and craft the building go green naturally. Lastly, the easy-to-maintain materials of the concrete column-beam structure and terracotta brick infill are not only justifiable given the seismic conditions of Dhaka but also due to the hot and humid climate of the urban capital. A special element of this project is the glass boundary wall calling on a sense of respect for the ambience, once a common feature in old days that achieved through the extended plinths of the mer in the old town. Thus, the private rituals of the apartment building are blended with the civic street life through a “landscape” intervention and a leaf of glass connecting the building to the rest of the city.