Though a structurally-complex project, 140 West Building is both elegant and timeless. And it is this aspect, amongst others, that the project emerged the cream of the crop in the 2018 SAPOA Awards.
The 140 West Street building was the overall winner in the Commercial Office Development category at the 2018 the South African Property Owners’ Association (SAPOA Property Development Awards) for Innovative Excellence. This year’s event was held at the International Convention Centre in Durban, South Africa. Paragon carried out all the architectural design aspects of the project.
A new commercial development by Zenprop, 140 West Street comprises 27 000 m² of P-grade office space in two linked towers on a lush landscaped podium, namely a ten-storey North Tower, a 14-storey South Tower, and eight parking levels. Located in Sandton, the project has received a four Green Star rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa.
The award is a recent addition to a growing list of accolades which Paragon has earned over the years. “We could not be prouder of this building, or more grateful for this award,” Paragon Project Architect, Kay Hausler, comments. “We wanted to come up with something different and new.” Describing it as a structurally-complex project, Hausler adds that the building is both elegant and timeless.
“The original brief from the client was that we should design the building to achieve the highest possible green design rating,” Hausler notes. Taking four years in total, of which the construction phase was two years, the aim was for the building to be sensitive in scale and response to the pedestrian zone. It was to be an iconic building that would function as a head office, while still being considerate of its inhabitants and context.
“We achieved this by incorporating natural elements, planting, designing for human scale, creating a landscape deck on the ground floor, landscaped roof terraces, break-out spaces, and spaces that encourage interaction and the awareness of others in the building,” Hausler explains.
She adds that the client was very open-minded in wanting something “fresh and new, and gave us quite a lot of freedom to explore some somewhat unconventional and custom design elements.” Enriching the internal user experience and the urban environment was achieved by activating the street edge by means of a restaurant; a convenient and beneficial addition to the bustling pedestrian route between the Gautrain Station and the Sandton hub.
Most prestigious celebration of excellence
Hosted by the South African Property Owners’ Association (SAPOA), the awards is the most prestigious programme of its kind within the South African commercial real-estate industry, aimed at defining excellence in the property industry. The awards provide public recognition, as well as setting a benchmark, for top-quality design and functionality. Outstanding contributions from world-class owners, developers, and built environment professionals are showcased at the annual event.
The judging criterion
Although functional aesthetic appeal is a pivotal requirement for the awards, SAPOA embraces a holistic approach that evaluates various designs, innovation, and efficiency elements, such as social transformation, overall impact, environmentally-sustainable design, design industry and community perception, and interiors that ensure the local commercial real estate sector is on par with international standards, SAPOA Property Development Awards for Innovative Excellence Chairperson, Pieter Engelbrecht, concludes.