Utopia Designs and Urbanscape Architects collaborated for conceptualization, design and interiors of the eight-storied office building- Sangini House- for the Sangini Group in Surat, Gujarat. The architecture and design of Sangini House explores ways in which it can respond to the context and spirit of the heritage in which it stands. This office building for the Sangini group characterizes new strategies for a flexible, column-free office space that creates a new urban venture in the city’s dense business district. Take a Tour to this office space at SURFACES REPORTER (SR):
The site for the new office building is located at the Canal Road. The areas on the Vesu – Canal corridor area are redeveloped and the roads are newly constructed. The scheme is envisioned as an upcoming real-estate epicentre providing a revived infrastructure and a healthy lifestyle for its inhabitants.
Cantilevered Floor Plates
An irregular site with mandatory setbacks, offered the opportunity of a triangular footprint. Conceptualising the design as a sculptural manifestation, the initial design ideas were developed as a work of art that would challenge the archetypal structural systems and the notion of a building, while showcasing the ethos of the brand, capability and expertise in the developer domain. The design intent was to create a dynamic built volume that would encourage the visitor to come into the space and the building.
As a result, cantilevered floor plates that defy the conventional grid structure with post-tensioned sweeping floors have been cast along with exposed concrete walls that are structural in nature. Bearing in mind the cantilever's scale, alternate floors have been intentionally connected with sheer walls; resulting in each floor acting as a single beam, with the functions shuffled accordingly. This exercise led to a column/wall free alternate floor.
The nature of the family business and the resultant hierarchy plays a crucial role in spatial planning and movement, in order to determine the connections and vertical segregation. The family-run business has excelled through the last four decades, making the terminology corporate ‘house’, extremely pertinent. Extending the home into the workspace, a personal, sensitive and conscious experience is created within the building through the hierarchy of spaces and their interconnectivity. A small floor plate results in its segregation from the vertical core that comprises two lifts and a staircase.
The Stone Skin
Guided by the building’s unusual design, distinctive profile and an appropriate orientation adopted through sun path analysis, the environmental strategy exploits the various factors to enable programmatic and functional success. The stone skin with three dimensional perforations envelopes the core and provides shade from the harsh sunlight of the south and west throughout the day.
The skin wraps around on the fifth and sixth floor to unify the structure and create an inviting and invigorating volume or the five-floor high entrance. The entrance is where the private world of the tower meets the public realm and this soaring light filled space tones down the scale, making it look proportionate to the floor plate.
The voluptuous space of the eight stories structure, transforms visibly into a five storied structure, a warmer, more approachable and composed space therefore justifying the use of the word ‘House ‘and departing from the overtly used word ‘corporate’.
From the entrance, the visitor is directed along the sweeping skin into a double height atrium which opens into a court. Daylight is drawn into the various office levels and down through the building via the atrium. The inclusion of ample daylight ensures a clarified and celebrated movement through the building that provides a physical and psychological balance to the employees.
Raw and Natural Finishes
The interiors of Sangini House echo the character of the architectural design and intent of the building. Staying true to the spirit of heritage and context, the materials and finishes are kept raw and natural – devoid of any cosmetic layering.
Most of the ceilings and walls are done in exposed concrete, with services such as electrical, air-conditioning, fire safety and fresh air left bare and exposed, offering an industrial feel to the spaces inside.
The flooring is fashioned in light grey micro concrete on most of the layers, with the entrance, elevator passages and staircases done in exquisite granite.
Customized Furniture and Fixtures
The furniture and partitions are customized as per functional needs and the nature of work. Adhering to the client’s brief of keeping the interior spaces subtle yet elegant and opulent, natural materials are used with creativity, originality and innovation; the materials include stone, reclaimed wood, metal, glass, ply and veneer, MDF, etc. Customized light fixtures and specially commissioned artworks add an impression of dynamism, colour, and energy to the spaces.
The fourth and seventh layers are designated to host esteemed guests and hence the interiors are designed with exceptional panache and swank. The Master sales cabin on the fourth floor is done in engineered wood with a customized cantilever-like table made of wood, metal and a ‘Michelangelo’ Italian top.
Above it, hovers a specially designed light fixture of the same Italian stone giving a scaled up feel to the entire cabin. The seventh floor is enveloped entirely in the ‘Michelangelo’ Italian marble with a metal art installation portraying the characteristics of urban life, designed to separate the main waiting area from the conference room and main cabin.
The main cabin on the floor offers extended vision to the overall volume, with its connected deck and ample greens. The deck overlooks the infinite view of the recently developed Canal Road.
Rain Water Harvesting
Other active means of energy systems in the building include rain water harvesting and drip irrigation systems which are used to optimize water consumption, radiant floors and ventilation systems that cater to the cooling needs. Together with the highly efficient services equipment and systems in the building and the façade design that is integral to the energy strategy, the building aims to achieve a Platinum green rating.
The Sangini House stands as a testament to the brand’s values, designed in response to context, heritage, and functionality.
A rather distinctively designed building, it is a new-age epitome of urban culture and environmental sensibility.
About the Firm
Established in 1984, the Sangini group is a leading construction firm delivering technical excellence in building design for habitats and commercial spaces. Starting from their workplace, the Sangini House, the group aims to cast several residential and commercial buildings in the area. Having worked with Utopia Designs for over 12 years, on a number of projects, this was an opportunity to deliver uniqueness and innovation, for which collaboration was key.
Name of Project: Sangini House
Location: Surat, Gujarat
Name of Client: Adarsh Patel
Name of Client’s Firm: Sangini Group
Architecture Firm: Urbanscape Architects and Utopia Designs
Site Area (sq ft & sq m): 8,300 sq ft & 772 sq mt
Built-Up Area (sq ft & sq m): 26,749 sq ft & 2,486 sq mt
Start Date: 1/2/2016
Completion Date: 31/3/2019
Photographer: Noughts and Crosses LLP | Andre Fanthome
Interior Design: Utopia Designs
Design Lead (Architecture): Dinesh Panwar and Apurva Desai
Design Team (Architecture): Vipul Nakrani, Urvakhsh Chichgar, Bhavin Swami, Dishant Patel and Suryaveer Patnaik, MihirDesign Lead (Interiors): Urvakhsh Chichgar and Vipul Nakrani
Design Team (Interiors): Apurva Desai, Bhavin Swami, Dinesh Panwar, Unnati Patel, Riddhi
Saint Gobain and AIS - Glass
Gujarat Sidhee Cement Ltd. – Concrete
Kolher – Sanitaryware
Cera-duravit - Fittings
Utopia Designs - Furniture
Mitsubishi Electric - Air Conditioning
ICA Italia, Asian Paints and AkzoNobel - Paint
Aludecor - ACP
Art Consultant – Tapi Art Promotion Initiatives
Tree of Life by Atul Mahajan
Ascending and Descending and The Ideal place: Between dream and reality by Ghanshyam Rathode
Metamorphose by Naishadh Jani
Happy faces: Happy buildings: Happy city by Rahul Popaniya
As the Bird Flies by Leena Pingale
Structural - Hiren G Desai (Sai Consultants, Surat)
Electrical - Abtech Electricals
Landscape Design – I Design (Ashwini and Chintan)
Façade Stone - Odyssey stone
Lighting consultant - Mandala consultants
Facade Lighting - Lumenatix
Lobby sculpture - Vibhor Sogani
HVAC - DBHMS - JAY AIR (Mitsubishi Electric)
Plumbing – DBHMS
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