Could you ever imagine working in a small city? A new massive office building by Morphogenesis is being built to accommodate over 45,000 people for the Surat Diamond Bourse office in Surat, Gujarat, India. At 6.5 million square feet, and housing over 4,000 offices, it will be the second largest office building in the world, placing only behind the Pentagon in Washington D.C. Although its physical footprint may be large, the office building was designed in a manner to minimize its ecological footprint. Passive design strategies such as day-lit workspaces, natural ventilation, and indoor/outdoor spaces not only make the Surat Diamond office an efficient climate-responsive design, but also a key player for achieving aesthetic and comfortable working spaces. Perhaps the largest challenge with a design of this size is how to navigate the large volume of people which would inhabit it. Morphogenesis approached this by designating the ground plane for vehicular movement and podium levels exclusively pedestrian circulation. On this podium level, transportation routes are optimized to create no walking time greater than 4 minutes from an entrance to office module—a design strategy similar to that of airport terminals.
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