When Sanjay Puri Architects were commissioned to design an office in Surat, India, where temperatures regularly hit over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, the architecture firm decided to use smart solar design rather than just air conditioning to beat the heat. The resulting building, aptly named The Crescent, comprises overlapped curvilinear structures oriented away from the harsh southern sun. The sculptural steel-framed office building’s dramatically curved shell is handsomely clad in reddish-orange Corten Steel sheets and is topped with a metal roof.
The 4,905-square-foot office building is set on a small corner site abutting a road junction in full view to pedestrians and motorists. To mitigate the harsh solar rays from the south, the architects created a horseshoe-shaped building pointed towards the north that wraps around a cooling, north-facing pool. On the south side of the building, the architects left a void for a small grass courtyard shaded by the building. The Corten steel external walls extend far beyond the building’s internal volumes to serve as solar-shading fins.
The office interior is accessed via an entrance on the northwest corner and is organized around a two-meter-wide passage runs the length of the outdoor pool. The various office spaces branch out from the passageway. Large north-facing glazing and other glazed incisions illuminate the workspaces with natural light and frame views of the cityscape and the oasis-like pool, but are shielded from harsh solar by the extended Corten steel walls. “The design creates an energy efficient building in response to the climate of the location and a distinct identity,” write the architects.
Images via Sanjay Puri Architects, by Vinesh Gandhi