Globant Iconic Building is located in the central area of Tandil, a few blocks away from the main square.
For its construction, an International Preliminary Design Contest was called through the SCA (Sociedad Central de Arquitectos) and the CAPBA (Colegio de Arquitectos de la Prov. De Buenos Aires). The main requirements established in the guidelines were that the building had to be iconic, sustainable, with 500m2 open-plan areas, 2 fire stairs, and maximum flexibility.
Three main concepts were used to structure the project's development:
The building and the revitalization of the urban space
Tandil is a city mostly composed of low-rise buildings and surrounded by mountains. High-rise buildings stand out in the urban fabric and allow for views of the landscape.
Considering the requirement for an iconic character, it was reflected upon what this meant. Keeping in mind that an icon is the representation of an object, we considered that, instead of being just a representation, the building had to be an expression of how work is done in Globant. Thus, passing by the Globant building should be an experience where people can be seen working, moving through the stairs, elevators, meeting spaces, greenhouses – spaces that not only meet the building's needs, but also revitalize the urban space.
The workspace as a space for socialization
Special emphasis was placed on researching the workspace, understanding that, besides the need for efficiency, spaces that encourage encounters and socialization should be created, were work can be a pleasant experience.
The first consideration was how to generate spatial connections in a multi-level vertical building. Spaces were connected diagonally and studied in section to enable a continuous relation along the building.
The contest’s guidelines required 2 fire stairs. Since staircases are usually enclosed spaces, their purpose is solely functional. As a consequence of this, there is a missed opportunity for a dynamic interaction between encounters that happen on the staircase and activities taking place on the actual floor plan of the building. By rethinking the traditional core, two staircases that run along the building's perimeter and connect different spaces diagonally were created, generating a connection between the spaces that follow one after the other diagonally. Each square-tube-shaped staircase is self-supporting and consists of a main staircase for everyday use on top, and its interior space serves as the fire escape staircase. The staircase is designed in a way that contributes to the spatial dynamics of the building and also defines the various spaces within the building.
The idea was to generate spaces that allowed for social encounters with the aim of fostering socialization. These encounters usually take place when getting coffee, using the printer, going to a different floor in the building, or even in the way to the restroom. We consider that these dynamic social spaces provide the opportunity of interaction. They were located on the perimeter of the building, bringing all these meeting-generating spaces to the building's facade. This is complemented with spaces that may enhance these interactions, such as living areas, dining rooms, relaxation and play areas, meeting rooms and “greenhouses”.
The layout was organized into four rings:
1. the core with utility installations,
2. the open floor plan for work areas with desks,
3. the “social hub ring” with stairs, greenhouses, meeting rooms, restrooms, kitchenettes, play and living areas and
4. the sunshades for solar protection based on orientation and usage.
A metal structure with precast slabs was used, providing the building with a technological image and enabling easy and clean future expansions with minimal environmental impact. A plug-in system where levels are added according to the company's needs to expand its production capacity. As the sun control is performed by sunshades, hermetically-sealed double glazing (DVH glass) was used along the perimeter of the building, with the characteristic of being almost transparent, allowing a visual connection with the urban environment both from the inside and from the outside.
The geometry of the building's floor plan is symmetrical in all four directions. This organized scheme, based on the urban context, is modified according to the movement of the sun. Sunshades are designed to vary their configuration according to the orientation. North and Northeast facades include greenhouses, spaces that harness solar heat in winter and function as galleries with the opening of glazed panels in summer.
Solar panels were incorporated to generate a high percentage of the energy required by the building, meeting regulatory requirements and achieving LEED Platinum certification.
Rainwater harvesting and treatment systems are used for irrigation and other purposes such as toilet flushing, resulting in a 45% reduction in potable water usage compared to a traditional building.
These spaces were introduced to promote a better working environment and generate additional oxygen. A second-phase plan includes the development of a green roof to mitigate the urban heat island effect and slow down rainfall impact.
A waste treatment plant was created in the basement, where pre-classified waste from each floor is received.
LEED-NC v3 for new constructions and for their subsequent operation.
The original project comprises a ground floor and 7 floors, but more floors can be added as needed following the plug-in concept, allowing the building to grow as required by Globant's needs.