Project Manager: Rimba Mulia Management Sdn Bhd
Structural Engineer: KAL & Partners Sdn Bhd
Mechanical & Electrical Engineer: Norman Disney & Young Sdn Bhd
Contractor: Juteras Sdn Bhd
Text description provided by the architects. The Pulau Banding Rainforest Research Centre is located in an environmentally sensitive area at the heart of the Belum-Temenggor Forest Complex. Conceived during a series consultations with various NGO’s, it represents a key element of the client’s commitment to sustainable development on the island.
Design considerations which are embedded within the building design include CED values in the selection of materials, low energy solutions to cooling and insulation and an open landscape, inviting participation from the researchers stationed there.
This small complex comprises two laboratories, a library, an office and open terraces. The research centre is designed as a place to facilitate the gathering and the dissemination of information from the jungles in Royal Belum and Temenggor Dam Complex. The idea of a building a research centre on this island is central to cultivating intellectual awareness of the forest complex and that it would lead to good practice of forest management and conservation of one of the oldest rainforest in the world.
These ideas are outlined in a document known as the “Pulau Banding Charter” which in essence promotes sustainable cultures. Therefore the realisation of the research centre thus fulfills a part of the agenda described above.
The design of the research centre incorporates environmentally friendly and tropical themes such as a safari roofs, deep roof overhangs, open terraces for sitting and sleeping, and open yards and toilets. Whilst the complex is sited on a slope, handicapped access is made possible through landscaping and link ways.
Existing trees on the site were retained and the undergrowth was cleared. The researchers are encouraged to cultivate a garden of indigenous trees from saplings collected in the jungle.
The character of the building is unassuming and it sets out to integrate technology with nature. As a place of research the foundation is the embodiment of the “guardian of the forest”.
This complex cost approximately RM800,000.00 and it was designed and constructed over a period of six months. The superstructure of the building is steel frame and the skin is a combination of lightweight blocks and shiplap timber cladding.