Singapore's once famous 'Carpark', situated along the central stretch of Orchard Road, is gone. In its place stands Orchard Central, at 12 storeys high, the island state’s tallest pure retail shopping complex.
Connected by a 24-hour underground link to Somerset MRT station and Centrepoint Shopping Centre, shoppers and pedestrians are diverted into the building, where an extensive network of 46 escalators and 14 glass lifts moves them quickly and easily between floors.
With extensive experience in designing mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems for shopping malls, Beca was engaged to provide a system that would help create a sustainable building with an emphasis on energy efficiency. Not the only challenge, the striking design of the building incorporates extensive glazing and light to create a transparent façade, which means that services cannot be hidden behind walls. Beca therefore had to design systems that complemented and supported the unusual building design.
One interesting design feature is the central grease treatment system servicing the large proportion of food and beverage outlets. A fully enclosed pneumatic waste conveyance system is also designed to remove refuse discreetly from view.
Other features include energy efficient light fittings throughout the building, various air-conditioning options to facilitate the atmosphere of the malls, shops, discovery walk and Al Fresco dining, and a complex smoke control system installed throughout.