Gaia Building, Ecuador
Completed at the end of 2016, the Gaia Building has been heralded as a new landmark for the Ecuadorian capital of Quito. Designed by Leppanen + Anker Arquitectos, the building uses an innovative moulded façade system.
Creating 15,000 sq. m of mixed-use space, and topped with a large roof garden, the 15-storey tower provides a combination of commercial, office and residential units.
The building uses a repeating pattern to reduce the number of moulds used in forming the distinctive glass fibre reinforced concrete (GFRC) façade.
The benefits of this sinuous façade material include the efficiency and ease of its installation. A system of adjustable metallic connections allows easy alignment of the complex forms, and the 4m panels can be reused.
As the first new construction in the neighbourhood, the intention behind the design was to combine diverse elements to produce a ‘play of light and shadow of the surroundings’. Carved around the perimeter are deep balconies, intended to help reduce solar gain allow large glazing sections to be used without reducing the efficiency of the passively-controlled internal spaces.
[All images © Sebastián Crespo]
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
We review a book aiming to unpick the complexities of building physics.
An introduction to the categories, procedures and types of listed buildings.
This Australian robotics firm have developed a bricklaying machine capable of building a house in 3 days.
20bn devices will be online by 2020, generating huge volumes of information. Is society making the most of this rich data?
Built over a period of 632 years, Cologne Cathedral is considered one of the world's finest examples of Gothic architecture.
UandI adds £1.5bn to development pipeline.
Here are 5 things leaders can do to create a truly circular economy.
Find out about the different types of delays on construction projects.
Researchers at Wien university have developed new system to create an inflatable concrete structure.
Take a look at this newly-opened tower in Chicago with a remarkable 20:1 height-to-base ratio.
The principles, practice and formwork of one of the most important components of modern architecture.