New skin for Sydney UTS's aging Broadway Tower?
By Richard High12 February 2010
The University of Technology's (UTS) Broadway Tower, Sydney, Australia could be given a "facelift" thanks to a new technology developed by architect Laboratory for Visionary Architecture (LAVA).
The 1960s icon, which was built using the latest construction techniques available at the time, will get a much needed facelift in what LAVA director Chris Bosse called a 'reskinning' thanks to the "simple" and "easily constructed" Tower Skin developed by the company.
"[This] speculative project offers a unique opportunity to transform the identity, sustainability and interior comfort of this once state‐of‐the‐art building," said Mr Bosse.
The skin, a transparent cocoon that acts as a "high performance micro climate", generates energy with photo‐voltaic cells, collects rain water, improves the buildings interior light levels and uses available convective energy to power the towers' ventilation systems, according to Mr Bosse.
The tower will be wrapped in the lightweight, "high performance" composite mesh textile, which will be fixed to a frame constructed around the building. The skin will be stretched around the walls and roof "achieving maximum visual impact with minimal material effort", added Mr Bosse.
At night, Mr Bosse hopes the skin will allow the building to become "a dynamic sculpture" on the Sydney skyline.
Images, films and art events could be projected onto the skin, allowing it to become "an intelligent media surface, communicating information such as performances and campus events in real time", he added.
No date has yet been given for the start of the project, or how long it will take to complete.