About 30 St Mary Axe Tower

Parametric Design course blog 3

This is my third blog. In this blog, I will try to analyze the architectural works designed by Foster + Partners. It is located at 30 St Mary Axe Tower in London, England. I have analyzed it from the perspective of modeling and parametric design. This time I will try to compare it with three of the six keywords the professor said.

30 St Mary Axe Tower Street View

This building is 179.8 meters high and has 50 floors. It is known as one of the “best buildings on the streets of London in the 21st century”.

This building is civilized because of its outstanding environmental protection properties. It has many passive energy saving and environmental design strategies. For example, it has adopted comprehensive sustainable measures to make it save 50% of energy compared with similar high-end air-conditioned office buildings. Fresh air is sucked into the building from the spiral patio to form natural indoor ventilation, which minimizes the dependence on artificial cooling and heating. The spiral lighting well maximizes the efficiency of natural lighting and controls the use of artificial lighting, so that sufficient light and vision can be obtained in the depths of the building.

View the roof grid from the inside

But in fact, I am more concerned about the relationship between the shape of this building and the keywords mentioned by the professor. I think it is more appropriate to describe it as “shape”, “wire frame” and “math”. The building has a very characteristic shape. Its shape is like a huge bullet. As a skyscraper, it forms a strong contrast with the surrounding buildings. Its elegant shape and graceful curves are completely different from other square box buildings. Stands on the streets of London.

Aerial View

The surface of this building is made up of a net frame composed of two curves revolving around its center. These net frames divide the façade into thousands of pieces of diamond-shaped glass that conform to the modulus. I think this is also a parametric design. One of the important uses in actual projects is to standardize a large number of building components to reduce production costs and make the construction of buildings more convenient. This applies some mathematical principles, but in fact, I still don’t know how to use them. Algorithm logic explains this building.

In addition, although the surface of this building is made of curves and nets, it is actually not its load-bearing structure but only the surface of the building. It is still a super high-rise building with a tube-in-tube structure, but the rotating and rising curve constitutes it. The appearance also emphasizes an upward trend.


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