ASPIRATION TOWERSaudi Arabia Location
Plot size – 19.084 sqm
Built up area – 78.000 sqm
In the human body, the spine is more than just a mechanism for keeping us upright. As we all know, it consists of 33 individual vertebrae that link together to form a strong, flexible, articulated column. It enables us – literally – to hold up our heads amongst our fellow-humans: to stand out in a crowd: to be recognized.
Our concept for The Aspiration Tower was based on the marvelous, practical and essential, structure of the spine. As we conducted ever deeper research into the engineering of the backbone, we uncovered startling and exciting similarities between the way that it provides us with the support and the structure we require, and, when extrapolated into the world of architecture, points us towards the optimum construction method for supporting the efficient, environment-respecting, freely circulating building to which we aspired in this, our latest creation.
For instance, each individual vertebra is formed from two distinct parts, a front part corresponding precisely to a building before it has received its envelope, or front skin, and a rear part which completes the structure: enclosing and protecting it. Together these two parts combine to form the perfect unit for the task: distinct and individual yet being a vital part of a bigger system.
We began to think of the foundations of the building as its pelvis, and the roof level as its head. This growing fascination for Nature’s fundamental structures brought us huge satisfaction, especially as we were determined to make the entire structure work naturally, harmoniously, and in tune with its environment: with the land and the sea, the wind and the waves, the day and the night.
We thought about how to work with the sun, rather than how simply to shut it out. We looked to the latest environmental technologies to help us produce a building that would provide the highest standards of human comfort whilst, simultaneously, reducing waste and emissions. We wanted a structure that would command respect for its architects, owners and occupiers: a recognition that they were so well-attuned to the growing needs of our natural environment that they would take a step into a brighter, cleaner, more beautiful future.
The location itself – by the Red Sea in Jeddah – is the perfect position for a landmark icon such as The Aspiration Tower. It will be the most dominant building in the area, but it will exert its power in a gentle, inviting manner. Its asymmetrical elevations are dignified but friendly, its materials harmonizing with its surroundings.