Techno parks, Technology Development Zones or Innovation Centers are similar terminologies describing specially designated areas where research institutions or innovative companies developing new technologies are fostered by some legal and financial encouragements. In Turkey, the development of such techno parks first initiated within university campus areas where industry and university can work together. Recently Turkish government started to designate new technological development zones not only in university campuses but also in the outskirts of large cities. These areas not only have special legal and financial advantages but they also have rather flexible building codes. The innovative characters of the companies and favorable building regulations enable more exciting and fresh architectural examples to flourish in these areas. ERA Architects was selected by a client to design the headquarters in the new Istanbul Technopark Campus.
The building for Intertech, a Denizbank / Sberbank initiative, is located in Istanbul Technopark Campus, next to the Sabiha Gokcen Airport in Kurtkoy District, within a rapidly urbanizing new neighborhood.
A young and innovative team of Information Technologies is the host of this new building. Since they spend most of their time in a digital environment, concentrated on their screen, the design’s main goal of has been set to create a place of comfort by daylight where users can contemplate with views of a wide horizon animated by planes going back and forth between earth and sky.
The client’s demand for a rational usage of interior spaces and circulation has been a significant parameter in relation to the budget. Yet, creating possibilities for a lively social environment would affect and shape the interior organisation of the building. The architects have envisioned a tension between the exteriors and interiors of the building; sturdy looking and well-arranged mass contrasts with the building’s ground relationship enabling diverse spatial and social experiences.
The solid and opaque white building is divided into two arms inviting users inside, while the bridge connecting the two sides defines an entrance courtyard. The bridge, initially proposed as a socialising area, has been transformed into a small gym in accordance with the demand of the client.
The building has a total of ten floors, which four of them are placed below ground. The floors above the ground consist of open work spaces surrounding the structural core in which tea-coffee stations, open and closed meeting rooms, fire-escape stairs, service areas like restrooms and shafts for system installations are located. There are also terraces on each floor where users can relax outside on their break times.
The main dining hall is placed below the ground floor on the backside of the building. The staged terrace stretched between the lower and the main ground levels help the sunlight and landscape reach this dining hall while linking the interiors to boundaries of the site.
The building establishes a dialogue with the sky, while enhancing its performance in terms of energy efficiency. The façade’s white dyed glass cladding acts like a canvas that reflects the constantly changing sky on the building. Some of the panels on the façade, controlled by an automation system, are regularly opened on specific hours of the day to let the fresh air in. In addition to all the design principles mentioned above, Intertech building is also LEED Gold-certified; developed to meet the certificate’s specific requirements.