MELROSE ARCH H202

An unassuming, crafted building within a coordinated urban design that allows the adjacent corner buildings to be more prominent. Simple, yet a hidden gem.

PROJECT DATE
1999
CITY
JOHANNESBURG
COUNTRY
SOUTH AFRICA
SIZE
2 300m2
CLIENT
MINES PENSION FUND

Building H202 Melrose Arch, Johannesburg, is a mixed-use development of retail, offices and residential functions integrated into a single building. It is one of several sites in a new city block, designed by individual architects for a single client within a coordinated urban design context of street edge and contained inner landscape courtyards. H202’s architecture is deliberately designed to be modest and unassuming, permitting the adjacent corner buildings to be more prominent.

Co-Arc achieved an urban continuity using careful detailing of simple elements and use of sympathetic materials. The openings in the face brick facade are carefully proportioned and composed to reflect the variety of mixed-use functions. The details of the facade reflect the structural requirements of brick openings. Steel channel sections are used as an aesthetic determinant element of support for openings and the covered colonnade detailing. Stainless steel mesh solar screens provide protection to the east facade. Within the depth of the west wall, a series of terraces and setbacks are calculated to provide protection from the afternoon sun.

Co-Arc’s careful consideration of access, stairs and the single lift led to a common external fire staircase being used by neighboring buildings with a resultant increase in lettable space. The staircase also provides an element of sculptural interest to the internal communal landscape courtyard.

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Publications

arrow Joubert, O. 10 years 100 buildings – Architecture in a democratic South Africa, p 170
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