A former brownfield has been transformed into the remediated site for ECO-TUBES, the Azriel Faculty of Design’s Workshop Building that boasts sustainable construction materials and energy-efficient systems. Designed by architect Joseph Cory of the Israeli architecture studio Geotectura Studio, the recently completed building was developed as part of the planned renovation of Shenkar College’s campus in Ramat Gan, Israel and features recycled and local materials along with non-toxic finishes.

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Selected as the winner of a competition, the Azriel Faculty of Design’s Workshops Building (ECO-TUBES) design was favored over other proposals due to its ability to be implemented in phases without disrupting student activity. Installed in two phases, the 6,600-square-meter Azriel Faculty of Design’s Workshops Building houses several workshop rooms—among them woodworking, metalworking, painting, foam manipulation and more—in addition to classrooms, offices, gallery spaces and the Gottesman Department of Jewelry Design. The building has also been engineered to allow for future growth through the addition of extra floors.

In a nod to the city’s heritage as a major citrus producer, the landscaping features a variety of citrus trees (including orange, pomelo, lime, pomelit and grapefruit) to mimic an urban orchard. The roof has also been transformed into a mini orchard with container plants. The abundance of greenery, along with the vertical louvers, made from bamboo fiber and recycled plastic, helps to combat the urban heat island effect and create a pleasant microclimate.

Related: Energy-plus home is a beacon of sustainability in Tel Aviv

Designed with Buidling Information Modeling (BIM) to optimize energy efficiency, the U-Glass-clad building was constructed with a compact, well-insulated envelope and follows passive solar principles. “The conception of a compact shape led to minimal use of material, while maximizing natural light until late afternoon,” explains Geotectura Studio. “The building’s unique shape is based on polygonal segments with ecological glass and excellent insulation along the sides. The polygons extend the length of the southern façade, making it possible to place more workshop tools that require optimal natural light. The arched design creates optimization of maximal workstations receiving natural soft lighting.”

+ Geotectura Studio

Images by Lior Avitan