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Construction Excellence Awards 2000

Award Winners - Commercial Buildings

THE URA CENTRE

Client: Urban Redevelopment Authority
Main Contractor: Kajima Overseas Asia Pte Ltd
Concept Architect: Urban Redevelopment Authority
Project Architect: D’Exodus Architects Planners
Design Consultant: Kenzo Tange Associates / Kajima Design Asia Pte Ltd
Structural Consultant: RSP Architects Planners & Engineers (Pte) Ltd
M & E Consultant: Squire Mech Pte Ltd
Quantity Surveyor: Urban Redevelopment Authority
Construction Cost: S$118.9 Million
Construction Period: 27 mths

The URA Centre comprises a 16-storey office block and a 5-storey podium with a 2-storey basement carpark. The new building is linked to the existing URA Centre through an air-conditioned glass link bridge and to the MND building by a glass covered walkway.

Architectural Features

The building facade featured distinctive lourved curtain walls and a 5-storey high glass and steel atrium constructed from an innovative tension cable truss system of glass walls and canopy. Trellises at the 5th and 16th storey terraces maintain the clean linear theme of the window lourves and double as sunscreens, shielding off direct sunlight from the row of full height glass screens fronting the terraces. Two tension ponds at the 1st storey lobby helps to soften the atmosphere and create the effect of a smooth skin of water draped over a monolithic sculpture. At the roof of the podium block, there is a landscaped water garden with pavilion nestled at the centre which offers a retreat to nature from the internal built up environment.

Key Construction Features

The close proximity to the MND Building and main roads required constant monitoring of all soil movements during the construction of the substructure. Hoisting of materials and concreting works were allowed only after office hours and weekend. The use of system formwork and precast hollow core slabs greatly enhanced the productivity during construction. The building is the first to adopt an integrated Building Management System to monitor and control the M & E functions. This simplifies and enhances the overall maintainability of the building. This is also the first project that adopted a lift transportation system that utilises a pre-registering intelligent feature to provide faster and more efficient operations for passengers.

Through careful design, proper co-ordination and integration of the structural, architectural and M & E works, the contractor has not only satisfied URA's Total Building Performance requirements but also successfully handed over the building on time with excellent quality.