Martin Road No. 38 is a residential and commercial development located in a former warehouse area near to the Singapore River, and close to the Singapore CBD. The area lies within a planning zone in the city where the planning authorities have encouraged the conversion of building use from commercial to residential, and in this project, 80% of the permitted area was able to become residential apartments, while the remaining is designed as a cafe and restaurant.
The brief was to design a building providing loft type spaces for young professionals who seek to live close to the heart of the city, the river, and to a nearby popular entertainment precinct, yet who desire to have a refuge from their busy working lives.
The commercial component of the project is housed in a two storey building facing Martin Road, and offers space for a café and restaurant at the ground level, accompanied by a covered walkway to form to a pedestrian-friendly streetscape. At the second level is a large gymnasium, which is open to the Public as well as residents. A sky terrace with a 33m long swimming pool, extensive sundeck and communal facilities separates the 2 storey commercial component from the residential building, which is arranged in three 9 storey towers and one 15 storey block.
The apartments have been designed with open layouts, permitting alternative space usage and internal flexibility. Apartment types range from 1+1 bedroom pied-a-terre units stacked in the 9 storey towers at the rear, facing the view of established trees, to larger 2 and 3 bedroom apartments with ample balconies facing Martin Road and the city beyond. Penthouses with private roof terraces and swimming pools offer views from the top of the building.
Off-form concrete is used for the main wall elements, both externally and internally and is regarded as a low maintenance material. Fundamental to the design is the response to location, climate and local construction methods.
A series of passive systems have been employed to reduce the energy consumption of the building. The design is orientated to the south and daylight penetrates deep in to the building to reduce the dependence on artificial lighting. All units are naturally cross-ventilated and in conjunction with the extensive facade of operable aluminium sun louvres, the internal spaces are kept cool. Our aim is to create memorable spaces through space, light and detailed finishes that reduce the desire to use air conditioning.
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