Central Business District (CBD) New Exponential Office Block Complete

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The concept of a Central Business District (CBD) in many thriving cities dates back to the 17th Century in London at the Exchange (near St. Paul’s Cathedral).

It was later mimicked in the United States’ New York two centuries later in the 1800’s. A resurgence of CBDs even recently has been manifested in times of success and economic boom. For instance, London’s CBD evolved at the time when Britain was at the height of its Empire.

Since then other nations have developed modern forms of CBDs, with examples from China’s Shanghai World Financial Centre and others like Dubai’ CBD. Botswana is currently embarking on a development of its own version of the CBD at the heart of Gaborone. Though several buildings have already been built and occupied, Gaborone CBD will boast grade A office space when completed as well as entertainment and other businesses, and commercial activities.

The Central Business District (CBD) first building – The Square (Shopping Mall and Office Block) – was a breakthrough which spearheaded further developments as manifest by the emergence of more buildings. Among these is an undeniably magnificent building, the new Exponential Office block, which is the first office block to be seen as one approaches the District from the South.

This project started in July 2010 with an Advanced Earthworks contract and was completed in June 2012. It consists of a modern office block with 12000 square meters of lettable area, space to park 285 cars on grade on an 8600 square meter site, in a fully landscaped and surfaced environment. Modern and unique materials were selected in the finishes, such as external metal cladding.

Modern Design & Architectural Brilliance
The client’s brief was to create a development that would define the CBD skyline and act as a landmark which stands out from surrounding buildings. Many outstanding features have been adopted in its design to achieve this ultimate end. This building employs unique external cladding aesthetics and external lighting which, without a doubt, provides an up-market Gaborone address, as is stipulated in the client’s brief.

Design Philosophy
The design philosophy was to assemble a modular floor plan that could accommodate as many as four (4) tenants per floor or one single tenant on a floor, or alternatively any number of tenants in between i.e. maximum flexibility.

Site Appraisal
This site was easy to work with as it was relatively flat, but with sufficient fall to drain naturally and thereby minimising the earthworks which were required.

The main challenge which was encountered was determining how best to maximise flexibility for a wide scope of tenancy solutions. This problem arose due to the fact that the intended occupants were unknown at the time of design.
Despite this, the problem was quickly remedied by a combination of innovation and flexible thought with a competent workforce, which has seen the office block stand out as the most beautiful building (especially at night).

Project Team

GH Group

Abdulla Associates
Project Managers
MDS Architecture
Abdulla Associates
Civil & Structural Engineers
IQS Solutions
Electrical Engineers
TDWI International
Fire Consultants
Mmile Mhutsiwa & Associates
Quantity Surveyor
BJ Builders
Main Contractor