Surat Diamond Bourse by Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rastogi nurtures an archetypal high-density commercial architecture integrated with efficient climate response. Established in the heart of the rough diamond trade, Surat, India, its enormous footprint of 6,500,000 square feet houses the world’s single largest office building accommodating 4500 offices for diamond traders. (Adishwaram.com, 2021) 

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With its nine iconic buildings interconnected to a central spine encompassing passive design strategies, this pursues to become the center of the international diamond trade equipped with a conducive working environment. (Bansal, N., 2021) The office complex strives to provide employment opportunities meshed in a magnificent work setting.

Surat Diamond Bourse by Morphogenesis: World's Single Largest Office Building - Sheet1
Facade_ ©Morphogenesis

High-Density Commercial Architecture

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Navigating through its massive scale, Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rostagi ensure that the office complex responds to the biggest challenge of trading-time constraints by considering functional proximities. They have leveraged vehicular efficiency and pedestrian safety to inhabit the large volume of its users with the structure’s planning and construction. Similar to that of airports, the office building optimizes travel distances from the site entrance. Its ground plane houses vehicular movement while the podium level is exclusive to pedestrian circulation. This segregates vehicular traffic and pedestrian traffic, generating the span of walking time from the site entrance to the farthest possible office for only seven minutes. 

The spatial efficiency of the project also extends into its construction design. Unifying the building on the horizontal and vertical planes, the ease of proximity to circulation nodes employs walkable corridors across 15 floors. To encourage a more seamless movement of users, the central spine connecting all the offices is made harmoniously with recreational areas that offer a tranquil transit and contribute to a dynamic working environment. This modularity in the design represents an innovative approach of Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rostagi to low-cost architecture while establishing a standard for global developments of this scale. (FuturArc., 2021)

Surat Diamond Bourse by Morphogenesis: World's Single Largest Office Building - Sheet2
Site Access _©Morphogenesis

Efficient Climate Response

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Sustainability pervades every part of the office complex. Its landscape, materials, and technology come together to deliver an aesthetic and comfortable office environment that recognizes the need for a lesser ecological footprint. 

Through the analysis of microclimate of hot and humid, passive design strategies and adaptive comfort have been carefully incorporated into every working space. They have identified these as the solar control to examine the methods of reducing direct heating due to sunlight, wind/air movement to maximize natural ventilation, orientation according to sun and wind direction, and energy performance for energy efficiency. (Bansal, N., 2021) These have governed the design of spaces resulting in a pure north-south orientation, building envelope of less than 30% window area, construction with lightweight concrete blocks, and thermal mass utilization by a natural brick cladding that minimizes external heat gains. 

In addition to these notable design strategies, Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rostagi utilize the features of rainwater harvesting, photovoltaic power generation, a gray water system, and local construction materials to the office complex. Its offices are also centrally air-conditioned through a chilled water-cooling system while over forty percent of building spaces are naturally ventilated, both with power back-up. (Abourezk, A., 2021)

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Surat Diamond Bourse by Morphogenesis: World's Single Largest Office Building - Sheet3
Atriums and Corridors _©Adishwaram Corporation Pvt Ltd

Aside from the high standards of environmental sustainability, landscapes and ample daylight have been luxuriously provided throughout the working spaces. Each of the offices has a sight of the intricately designed landscape courts. Located on the site level, these courts are unified with exquisite al-fresco on the eastern side house food courts together with other recreational areas that serve as a breeding place for new businesses while invigorating a festive place within the office complex. (Abourezk, A., 2021) 

The dense vegetation and water bodies present within this takes its pattern on the concept of “Panchtatva” ‘, exuding the five elements of nature—air, water, fire, earth, and sky in the span of almost 200 feet wide and 300 feet long. (Suratdiamondbourse.in, 2021)  In addition, Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rostagi arranged the central spine connecting all these offices in a manner that fosters break-out spaces, green atriums with floral herbage to provide relaxing transit, and rich visual experiences. 

These spine corridors also have a radiant cooling system to keep a pleasing environment as users traverse the building. (Suratdiamondbourse.in, 2021) The said aesthetics and landscaping not only blur the boundaries of interior and exterior but also induce psychological benefits as individuals get to relish a marvelous working setting. (Abourezk, A., 2021)

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Surat Diamond Bourse by Morphogenesis: World's Single Largest Office Building - Sheet4
Al-fresco Dining _©Adishwaram Corporation Pvt Ltd

An Exemplar of Large-Scale Development

Landscape Courts _©Adishwaram Corporation Pvt Ltd

Setting ablaze the hearth of the rough diamond trade, Surat Diamond Bourse showcases a paradigm of spatial efficiency, innovative technology, and passive design strategies. Its focus on functional proximities creates seamless vehicular and pedestrian movement. Along with it, innovative technologies display low-cost architecture while maintaining a spectacular modular design, and its rich ecological footprint demonstrates promising results that reduce environmental impact despite its enormity. 

With this, the stroke of genius of Morphogenesis-Manit Rastogi and Sonali Rostag rises to be an exemplar of large-scale development for coalescing high-density commercial architecture and climate-responsive design.

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References

Adishwaram.com. 2021. Surat diamond Bource, Surat – Adishwaram Corporation PVT. LTD | A Spectrum of Engineering Solutions. [online] Available at: <https://www.adishwaram.com/portfolio/surat-diamond-bourse-surat/?fbclid=IwAR0QttEOcvzQ8r2aV_pIdimLXRsiHcNO_AEaiQEnIJtRu_YMddenEw610VM> [Accessed 2 September 2021].

Bansal, N., 2021. Designing the world’s largest office building: Surat Diamond Bourse. [online] Linkedin.com. Available at: <https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/designing-worlds-largest-office-building-surat-diamond-nitin-bansal-1/?fbclid=IwAR13EWRZnAV06I3Oi9emLvh_U3aEzm4BRNX_FCeX2Z-oqt8lCcbxx7Nr8Ic> [Accessed 2 September 2021].

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FuturArc. 2021. Surat Diamond Bourse | FuturArc. [online] Available at: <https://www.futurarc.com/project/surat-diamond-bourse/?fbclid=IwAR22Dlk4ToggW3Cp34G6-GhaL-9GxRj_COHX3LlXLiQgoYbSfIRZEmtcsJg> [Accessed 2 September 2021].

Abourezk, A., 2021. New Morphogenesis Project Set to Be the Second Largest Office Building in the World. [online] ArchDaily. Available at: <https://www.archdaily.com/884705/new-morphogenesis-project-set-to-be-the-second-largest-office-building-in-the-world?fbclid=IwAR3OWNFqpMYvbfqrTs28oCwnTlOyhH_ckGi8QlOhEcjADxrCDxrIdg5Ubfw> [Accessed 2 September 2021].

Suratdiamondbourse.in. 2021. Green Building Concept – Surat Diamond Bourse. [online] Available at: <https://www.suratdiamondbourse.in/green-building-concept> [Accessed 2 September 2021].

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Author

Russel is an essayist, neuroscience enthusiast and architecture student who stands amazed by how the distinct disciplines interweave into a harmonious whole if understood correctly. She strives to harness what is in store of these into functional built environments inspired by narratives and informed by neuroscience.

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