Metropolitan Hybrids rethinks large-scale structures at strategic locations in order to produce more integrated value.
What are the values we aim to integrate?What are the values we aim to integrate?
The first and foremost question regarding these massive buildings is: who are they addressing? Instead of being exclusive environments, shouldn't they become shared spaces, both shared among their different occupants and with the city around them? Shouldn’t they be an integral part of the city?
The hybridity of these buildings also leads to their attractiveness. Offices become a collection of environments in which to wander, work and meet people surrounded by the city and nature. Plants permeate the building, blurring outdoor and indoor climates. Instead of juxtaposing functions and conditions, it is in the cross-pollination of different atmospheres that we are seeking integrated living, working and meeting environments.
If office buildings were once an expression of a company’s permanence and reliability, permanence today depends greatly on a company’s capacity to reinvent itself. The building is released from the task of bearing an identity for the firm, and is instead required to help a company take on multiple configurations. The possibility to reconfigure the building for different users at different times makes it durable. In spatial terms, this flexibility and variety of conditions are usually guaranteed through mobile equipment. When space itself offers variety, the existing possibilities are multiplied.
These buildings can and should in fact be seen as cleverly engineered systems, efficient in their energy use and ready for adaptation to survive different life cycles. In that sense, reusing existing structures is a search for opportunities in how to improve their performance.