Qatar Science & Technology Park

Innovative Design Blooming in One of the Harshest Climates on Earth.

Rising from the sand dunes, the Qatar Science and Technology Park (STP) brings together the best in design and business practises, creating a world-class environment for technology development.

QSTP is a key initiative of the Qatar Foundation in its drive to diversify the economy, create highly skilled jobs and to establish Qatar as a knowledge economy in the Middle East.

The architectural aesthetic is striking and contemporary, whilst respectful of the Qatari culture and designed for the desert climate.

The winged structure provides shelter from the hot desert sun, linking the buildings and encouraging people to move freely between the activity hubs in the tenant building, atrium spaces and the Incubator Centre’s retail outlets and service facilities.

The masterplan encompasses 123ha of land which is integrated with the facilities of the Qatar Foundation, its new teaching hospital and its new convention centre. The vision for the project was to create a robust, flexible Masterplan that could accommodate unforeseeable R&D needs by providing maximum flexibility in plot sizes and arrangements while emulating the spirit of vernacular walkable Gulf Arab Urbanism.

Process.

01

The iconic Incubator Centre

Capitalizing on its strategic location, the iconic Incubator Centre is the nucleus of STP. Located at the centre of the site on an elevated podium, it has an aeronautical quality and appears to defy gravity, like a hovering UFO, which gives it a subliminal presence in the landscape.

By elevating the IC building, the whole undercroft podium spine was given over to public areas and retail tenancies including banking, travel outlets, prayer rooms and other amenities. 

You can walk under the entire building and connect to neighbouring laboratories and future tenant buildings. 

On the upper two levels the building houses the administrative hub of the campus centre: management offices, ‘hot offices’, concierge and meeting facilities and small tenancies suitable for incubator or start-up businesses. A restaurant facility will also be provided.

The IC building is punctuated by three atria: the central atrium which provides a gathering space for visitor arrival and departure, concierge and security, and then two atriums on either side which provide the tenancies with natural light, a vertical and horizontal circulation zone and gathering spaces for informal interaction.

02

Key drivers of the design

Thermal comfort and natural light within the buildings were key drivers of the design. Sun screens, façade design and extensive use of atria allow the buildings to achieve the demanding brief of maximum flexibility and the optimum human environment for reserach and development.

All the building facades incorporate double skin metal and glass external wall zone which assists the control of heat gain and reflects light back into the interior spaces, reducing the loading of artificial lighting required deep in the building. Double glazed high performance window systems were also utilised to reduce the amount of heat loading on the building.

"The integration of landscape elements and water features create a cool, misty microclimate with high pressure water released through misting jets throughout the day."
03

Architecture of the veil

The design needed to resonate with local communities but at the same time attract international partners as a global best practice R&D facility.

"The solution was to draw on Islamic cultural references in an abstracted, contemporary expression using cutting edge technology."

An important feature of Islamic architecture is .the focus on the interior space as opposed to the outside, or façade. The architecture of the courtyard building has been called the architecture of the veil. Enveloped by a relatively plain façade, the introverted courtyard building expresses the need to exclude the outside environment while protecting that which is inside - the inner life.

It goes hand in hand with the non directional plan, the tendency to an infinite repetition of individual units and the continuous merging of spaces without any specific direction – all key design elements that have been utilised to accommodate growth in the masterplanning at STP, and to anticipate expansion of the Incubator Centre and ITTC Buildings.
While most of the detail is revealed inside the buildings, the iconic wave-like roof form of the veil structure set against flat perforated screen facades creates a sense of exuberance and aspiration in the design for the staff and students of the university, as well as an urban landmark for the city.

Details.

Client

Astad/Qatar Foundation

Address

Doha, Qatar

Area

115,000 m² / 1,237,850 sq. ft.

Status

Built

Completion Date

2012

TEAM

Project Team: Peter Miglis, Principal-in-charge, Alf Seelling, Principal, Mark Mitcheson-Low, Principal, Peter Nielsen, Principal

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