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Distribution Centre

Part 1 Project 2012
Hatem Hatem
American University of Sharjah Sharjah UAE
Starting with a simple line running from ground to ground, and going through a generative process, a structural unit was developed. Lines were bundled and distributed in various manners to create members that made different structural units.

Rules of rotation and overlapping were applied to the basic units to create further variations. These rules aimed to generate a structure that allows for further distribution and visual balance, as well for openings that bring light into the interior of the structure.

As the site is situated between two hills, the base contours of each defined a flat area in between, which became the boundary of the width of the structure. In the earlier stages of the process, these contours were abstracted to a small and a bigger circle that shared one centre. Structural grid lines were generated from that centre. Later on the structure adapted to the actual irregularity of the site contours, by the use of differently centred circles and by generating the structural grid lines from the centroid of the two circles.

The shape and proportions of each structural member relied on the storage requirement for the project. Allowing each structural bay to include a row of storage pallets with shared side circulation spaces. Using this strategy allowed for a clear limitation of form, and created a functional response to the program.

The overall structure itself scales down within a proportional hierarchal system. Loading bays were situated on the bigger side of the structure, moving away from them, a form limiting rule was applied: the less the distance the more the storage, the further the distance the less the storage.

Just after the open shaded space that covers the loading bays, a concrete shell was introduced. The shell sits beneath the steel structure, and divides the width of the structure into office space and forklifts circulation space. From that shell, three 10-meter high concrete arches extrude outside of the steel structure to the street side, creating a visual hierarchy for the office space and acting as an entry threshold.

Hatem Hatem

Tutor(s)

2012
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