OASIA Hotel Singapore
A verdant tower of green in the heart of Singapore’s dense Central Business District (CBD), Oasia Hotel Downtown is a prototype of land use intensification for the urban tropics.
In response to the brief for distinct Offices, Hotel & Club rooms, WOHA Architects created this tropical “living tower” with a series of different strata, each with its own sky garden. These additional “ground” levels allow generous public areas for recreation and social interaction throughout the high-rise, despite the inner city high density location.
Each sky garden is treated as an urban scale verandah, sheltered at high level by the preceding sky garden. The openness allows breezes to pass through the building for good cross-ventilation thereby allowing functional, comfortable, tropical spaces with greenery, natural light and fresh air. The sky gardens and external façade are beautifully landscaped as an architectural surface treatment achieving an overall Green Plot Ratio of 1,100%. The tower’s red aluminum mesh cladding houses 21 different species of creepers, providing food for the birds and insects.
Working with WOHA Architects, we assessed the ecological value of the development through biodiversity, social and ecosystem service assessments.
The biodiversity was evaluated through 10 day and night site surveys over a period of 6 months. To keep our biodiversity audit context-relevant, the biodiversity in neighbourhood Duxton, green patches around OASIA and Spottiswoode parks was also studied. OASIA was moderately successful in attracting biodiversity with 18 species recorded which was nearly 50% of the species found in the neighbourhood. The vibrant shades of pink, purple and yellow flowers on the façade attracted honey bees, bulbuls, orioles and sunbirds. The living façade with plants was also more effective in reducing bird collisions. We concluded that if OASIA typology was replicated in the central business district it would bring back biodiversity into downtown Singapore.
What was the social impact of greenery? We asked the building users about their thoughts of OASIA as a green building. 88% of building users surveyed were very supportive of greening efforts. Hotel uses found that the greenery made their experience much more relaxing and positive. Many found it unique while others felt such initiatives also improve air quality and cools down buildings in the neighbourhood. Some saw it as a way to “create more awareness of green life in our modern society”
Our ecosystem service assessments revealed that despite being a compact development of 2,310 m2, OASIA’s greenery released more than 48 tons of oxygen per year and reduced heat energy to 242 kW. OASIA’s living façade effectively multiplies the building's green footprint by 10 times. This means that OASIA's greenery effectively performs 8 - 68% as well as a pristine rainforest for different ecosystem services. For these efforts, OASIA Hotel Downtown won the Best Tall Building Worldwide 2018 award.