LAB OF THE YEAR
Creating collaboration across geographic and scientific borders
continued from page 7
The tower is intended for dry lab and office
uses. Its floors are adjacent to or overlook the
sky gardens. It has a core at the NW corner with
passenger elevators, service elevator, electrical
and IT rooms, and communicating stair with
views into the sky gardens and town center. The
wet labs in the three bar buildings are loft tenant
space with cores between the tenant bars.
Mechanical shafts in the bar buildings are
located approximately every nine lab modules.
The shafts contain supply and exhaust ducts
from the air handlers on the roof. There is a
full size access door leading to a grating at each
floor within the shaft. There is space on each
side of the grating for the installation of fume
exhaust ducts as required by future tenants.
Drain and vent stacks also run in the shafts.
Establishing appropriate ventilation requirements was arguably the single most important
decision to make for energy efficiency. The
design team conducted analysis of comparable
projects that showed that 4-6 ACH was safe.
However, the recommendation was this only
be implemented if it was accompanied by the
installation of an Aircuity system. The owner
is currently assessing the benefit of Aircuity
and there is a future plan to retrofit the labs
with this system. In the meantime, the labs in
CREATE operate at 8 ACH. A step taken was to
include the use of night/unoccupied setbacks to
achieve some savings. In addition, occupancy
sensors mounted on the hoods are used to
determine when the labs are unoccupied.
From CREATE a visual connection is maintained with the New University Town Green.
Lower density development is concentrated
on the east side of Town Square. These East
Lab buildings are very narrow and range from
5 to 7 levels. The lower building height and
smaller footprints relieve the ground plane and
permit the flow of natural light and views out
into landscaped gardens in between. The West
Tower is a composition of three slipped narrow
modules sitting above the two story podium
west of Town Square.
The landscape concept is inspired by the
Singapore Botanical Gardens. The Town Center
is covered by a canopy (of glass and photovoltaic panels) that captures and diverts significant
(almost daily) rainfall and naturally channels
the gentle breezes thereby maintaining a comfortable open air climate for 90% of days year
round. The hardscape is developed selectively
using natural stones and materials that are
tactile and absorptive, contributing to water
The tower and bar buildings are arranged around and have entrances from a central plaza with covered pathways,
seating, gardens, and water features. (Photo: ©Tim Griffith)
Gardens on the site continue beyond the
ground plane and up into the Tower as a green
shaft. These tall, open air and accessible gardens
include bamboo and other native plants. The
gardens are surrounded with a scrim of vegetation, screening direct sunlight, yet allowing the
tropical breezes to pass through.
This series of strategic moves minimizes the
perception of the building mass, establishes a
porous pedestrian-oriented, restored garden
environment, and complies with the Master
Plan criteria and goals.
Singapore’s Building Construction Authority
awarded CREATE a Green Mark Platinum
certification. The building and its laboratories
utilize a high performance enclosure, durable
materials, shared research equipment, innovative water and low energy HVAC systems, and
a reusable plug and play kit of parts for the lab
Site, climate, and daylighting analysis deter-
mined narrow floor plates (16m wide, with 8m
daylight penetration from perimeter glazing)
oriented on the north–south axis as the ideal
configuration to reduce solar gain and maxi-
mize day lighting and account for a potential
lighting reduction of up to 50%. Sustainable
energy reduction strategies include photovol-
taic panels at roofs and window awnings, green
roofs, and wind turbines driven by building
exhaust air incorporated into the tower.
CREATE establishes a memorable urban
landmark and reflects the land development
aesthetic of Singapore. By concentrating development and minimizing the footprint of buildings, open space is preserved for a managed,
The core values of adaptability, interaction,
and sustainability are CREATE’s conceptual
drivers. Traditional laboratories are wide, and
divided by building cores and internal central
corridors. At CREATE, the buildings are very
narrow. Cores and corridors are located at the
perimeter to introduce maximum daylight
and flexibility. The universal module supports
the full range of lab types from computational
science, wet biology, dry chemistry, as well as
The CREATE campus is designed to cultivate a strong sense of community. It does so by
supplying a significant amount of interaction
space in different scales throughout the facility.
Social magnet spaces are created and replicated
throughout the site design, from the smaller
scale conference rooms to the sky gardens overlooking the Plaza and Town Square.
Placing a highly technical complex in a
lush botanical garden provides the researcher