Public space is essential in any urban environment, but drawing people out can be difficult when the weather makes the outdoors uncomfortable. The Emerald Plaza in Abu Dhabi by Los Angeles-based Emergent Architecture is intended to invite people out of doors despite high temperatures by offering shade and a wide expanse of space. The multi-level, modern plaza physically links the buildings surrounding it via walkways, while cooling pools help to regulate the plaza’s temperature.
Emerald Plaza‘s ground-level environment acts much like a grotto, maintaining a comfortable temperature with water regulated and cooled by geothermal heat pumps. Above it, a sculptural volume is crafted from the surrounding angular geometries. This space will be used as an indoors conference and media center that overlooks the water. The pools will be filled with solar-powered lily pads and flowers to create an attractive public space for the nighttime hours, when lower temperatures will make both the lower and upper terraces more inviting.
Photos courtesy of Emergent Architecture