Firm Name: Aedas
Designer: Andrew Bromberg, Aedas
Project name: The Star
Location: Singapore
Area: 62,000 sqm
Completion year: 2012

Aedas is a global architecture firm and design practice located in Hong Kong. It was founded by Welsh architect Keith Griffiths. The firm designs creative solutions for the communities and cities with a blend of contextual and cultural understanding. The Star is one of the most  amazing projects designed by the esteemed firm.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet1
The Star, Singapore ©archdaily.com

The Star is a mixed-use complex that acts like a civic node in Singapore. The structure comprises a vibrant civic plaza, a retail complex, an exhibition hall, a cinema and theatre hall, spots for food and beverage, and a vast 5,000-seat cultural theatre. Designed by Andrew Bromberg, the Star encourages a rich and active environment in the building with a dynamic design to provide diverse experiences for the public and private realms inside the building. The building provides an interesting experience to commute around the building and connects different parts of the building by providing a series of escalators, ramps, and terraces at different levels.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet2
The exterior view of south elevation_©archdaily.com

The design philosophy of building

The site is located at Buona Vista, Singapore and was settled to create a regional center for various cultural, economic, and entertainment activities. Responding to the client’s bold vision, the architectural solution was creating effective designs with a proper technical response and a dynamic architectural form. In addition, the master plan sets out detailed planning constraints in terms of pedestrian connectivity, building envelope, height control, retaining of site topography and primary site features, as well as retaining/transplanting of mature trees of significance.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet3
The escalator ©architectmagazine.com

The Star Vista

The retail space addresses the natural site topography and spirals inwards to connect major entry points and amalgamate an open amphitheater.

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The view of plaza_©archdaily.com

The Star Performing Arts Centre

The 5000-seater Star Performing Arts Centre with two balconies is a huge theatre located on the upper levels of the building. As the south elevation of the building is kept visible, one can witness the inner functioning of the theatre from the outside. The sound and vibrations from the lobby and outside setting are prevented by the cavity wall system. By adopting the ‘box within a box approach, the steel structure supports the theatre. The auditorium is on the top level of the building by giant towering columns. The bottom of the auditorium acts as a ceiling to the 33m high grand cathedral.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet5
The Star Performing Arts Centre_©archdaily.com

Planning and Design

The planning guidelines stated to retain the original topographical levels and significant site features to be highlighted. The various accesses and drop-off points that range from 111.00 FFL to 115.00 FFL open out into the vibrant plaza and provide connectivity throughout the building.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet6
Ground floor plan_©archdaily.com

The hilltop feature also creates a series of stepped terraces, having VIP drop-off points to Star Performing Art Centre. The naturally ventilated ground floor having a 35 m high plaza connects to the main pedestrian flow from MRT, i.e., one north park and other future development. The design thoughtfully integrates the informal civic spaces into the lower floors of the building and creates several landscaped communal zones where various activities can be held such as performances, exhibitions, etc. 

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Zoning of the building_©archdaily.com
The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet8
The connectivity inside the structure_©andrewbromberg.com

Structure:

The south elevation of the entire building is transparent and the interior of the building is visible. The form has a complex geometric form with slanted columns and twisting facades. The building form protrudes in and out, pointing to the front façade. The Star is a 16-story height building with faceted glass fissures.

The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet9
Concept sketch of the building_©archdaily.com
The Star, Singapore by Aedas - Sheet10
Grand foyer of Theatre_©archdaily.com

Sustainability

Foremost, the Star is a public building that aims to provide a holistic social environment accessible to the people. A series of open outdoor spaces that provides natural air movement and protects visitors from the tropical rain and sun.

The built form has been designed to receive northern and southern breezes and create comfortable seating areas. Canopies are installed to provide shade from rain and sun to provide a healthy outdoor environment. The eastern and western exposure is reduced to avoid solar heat gain.

The building aims to be the epitome of sustainable and passive design to enhance the user’s sensory comfort. The design uses Computational Fluid Dynamics to optimize ventilation and create thermal comfort for the users. They have also adopted a hybrid ventilation strategy such as an evaporative cooling system with low-speed fans in the basement civic plaza by avoiding mechanical refrigeration and by proper analysis of the window-to-wall ratio.

The civic plaza_©archdaily.com

Some of the energy-efficient techniques that are adopted are energy-efficient lifts and escalators, motion sensor lighting controls, reducing potable water pollution, and installing ductless fans with CO sensors in the basement. Important points such as transportation, waste management, and air quality are given consideration. Due to an efficient sustainable design, the building meets the requirements of the BCA Green Mark Gold ating.

To summarise, the Star is designed with a holistic approach keeping in mind the site conditions and clients’ approach.

References:

1.ArchDaily (2014). The Star/Andrew Bromberg of Aedas [online]. Available at: https://www.archdaily.com/510587/the-star-andrew-bromberg-of-aedas [Accessed date: 21 October,2022]

2.Architect Magazine: Architectural Design (2013). The Star, designed by Andrew Bromberg for Aedas [online]. Available at: https://www.architectmagazine.com/design/buildings/the-star-designed-by-andrew-bromberg-for-aedas_o [Accessed date: 20 October,2022]

  1. Aedas. The Star [online] Available at: https://www.aedas.com/en/what-we-do/featured-projects/the-star [Accessed date: 21 October,2022]
  2. Andrew Bromberg Architects. The Star [online] Available at: https://www.andrewbromberg.com/works/thestar/ [Accessed date: 20 October,2022]
  3. I Am Architect. The Star, Singapore[Online] Available at: https://iamarchitect.sg/project/the-star-singapore/ [Accessed date: 21 October,2022]
Author

Rucha Pimplapure is an architect and a research enthusiast from Pune. She believes that through a sensitive and holistic design approach, architecture can have a profound impact on the society and shape the cities we live in. She expresses her creative ideas by writing and sketching.

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