Conceived as a project that breaks away from the usual residential typology of vertical apartment towers, The Interlace – designed by Rem Koolhaas’s Office for Metropolitan Architecture and built by its partner Büro Ole Scheeren – was recently named ‘World Building of the Year,’ an award given annually at the World Architecture Festival (WAF).
Containing over a thousand living units of different sizes, as an alternative to the tall housing blocks that abound in Singapore it presents a network of domestic and community spaces that go about connecting with one another and also with the environment around, in the process forming a kind of ‘vertical village.’ The thirty-one blocks that form the complex, each rising six floor levels, thus all have the same length, and are arranged following a hexagonal scheme, allowing the formation of eight large permeable courtyards that serve the dwellings.
In tune with the tropical climate of Singapore, The Interlace seeks to maximize the presence of nature through a very generous deployment of elevated gardens, terraces, balconies, and green roofs. Interwoven with vegetaion, various facilities which are intended for communal use offer exuberant opportunities for leisure, culture, and social interaction activities. Moreover, it has gone up in accordance with passive energy-saving strategies, solutions which are based on research and analysis of solar and eolic movement and of local microclimates. In this way, the complex meets with the demanding sustainability criteria that are a mark of the 21st century.