Technogym
Technogym
Technogym

Hopkins Architects-designed wildlife sanctuary and visitor centre completed in Sharjah, UAE

Work has been completed on the Khor Kalba Turtle and Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharjah, UAE
Designed by Hopkins Architects, the sanctuary will also provide education and visitor facilities
Seven interconnected pods and tensile structures create the visitor centre
Facilities include aquaria, exhibition areas, visitor amenities, staff offices, veterinary facilities, classrooms, gift shop and a café

Work has been completed on the Khor Kalba Turtle and Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Commissioned by Sharjah’s Environmental Protected Areas Authority (EPAA) and situated on Kalba Creek, one of the most sensitive and biodiverse nature reserves in the Gulf, the complex comprises a cluster of rounded building forms, creating a sanctuary for rehabilitating turtles and nurturing endangered birds.

Designed by Hopkins Architects, the sanctuary will also provide education and visitor facilities to increase environmental awareness and engagement with conservation programmes.

Seven interconnected pods and tensile structures create a visitor centre, with a terrace and panoramic views towards the mangrove forests and distant mountains.

Facilities include aquaria, exhibition areas, visitor amenities, staff offices, veterinary facilities, classrooms, gift shop and a café.

A nature trail encourages visitors to explore the reserve’s rich biodiversity of indigenous mangrove forests and mud flats and the species it supports including turtles, stingrays, gazelles and the rare Arabian Collard Kingfisher.

The geometry of the pods is inspired by urchin exoskeletons and purposefully echoes those of the Buhais Geology Museum, with which the Sanctuary is paired.

The pods have been designed as pre-fabricated concrete structures to minimise disruption to the existing terrain, with concrete foundations which are simple robust discs, elevated to protect them on this tidal location.

Simon Fraser, principal of Hopkins Architects said: "Designing for a site like this is an incredible opportunity.

"The pioneering circular forms we designed for the Buhais Geological Museum, are also perfect for this rich ecological location as they touch the ground lightly.

"We have adapted them using soft scalloped precast cladding made from discarded shells found in the local area which responds to the marine environment and which softens the external appearance of the project to harmonise with its surroundings."

The modular buildings invite the landscape into the spaces, using framed panoramic views out and rays of natural light from above.

The pods are clad with segments of white scalloped pre-cast concrete referencing the shells found on the local shoreline and creating subtle variations of light and texture.

An array of steel ribs accentuates the sculptural cantilevered forms and completes this robust cladding system, itself designed to withstand the site’s unforgiving coastal conditions.

Visitors approach a semi-enclosed ribbed pod which serves as an orientation space and features glazed openings orientated towards key views.

A palette of light coastal tones softens the interior which is illuminated by skylights.

Passive design principles were prioritised throughout construction, to protect the interior spaces from the desert heat and lower the overall operational energy required.

The pods‘ precast concrete shells, ribs and in- situ foundation discs provide a well-sealed, exposed thermal mass across their floors, walls and roofs. A waterproof membrane and insulation running within the cladding cavity, is continuous across the pods surface.

Sharjah  Hopkins Architects 
Related stories
27 Jan 2020

Sea urchins inspire pod designs for new Buhais Geology Park

Work has been completed on the Khor Kalba Turtle and Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE). Commissioned by Sharjah’s Environmental Protected Areas Authority (EPAA) and situated on Kalba Creek, one of the most sensitive and biodiverse nature reserves in the Gulf, the complex comprises a cluster of rounded building forms, creating a sanctuary for rehabilitating turtles and nurturing endangered birds. Designed by Hopkins Architects, the sanctuary will also
CLD,VAT,HAM,ARC,DES,PUB
Designed by Hopkins Architects, the sanctuary will provide visitor facilities / Hopkins Architects
More news
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7679     
 
 
 
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7679     
 
 
 
company profile
Company profile: Willmott Dixon
Willmott Dixon delivers the social infrastructure that people depend on in their daily lives. We partner with our customers to focus on the services they want to provide, not just the building we construct, and we are committed to achieving a higher social purpose through our work.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Collaboration is at the heart of NBW’s working practices
Thomas Woltz
"I am very proud of stewarding the largest public space to be built in Manhattan in a century"

The Wall Street Journal’s Design Innovator of the Year on designing the gardens at Hudson Yards and looking to the Native Americans for ideas on how to create a resilient future

Wellness: Room with a view
"Sam was such a champion for the team, and my goal is simply to carry that same torch"

As Blackberry Mountain resort opens in Tennessee, we find out why the project is a deeply personal one for owner Mary Celeste Beall

Manuelle Gautrand
"The cities where you have good cultural buildings and facilities – it’s a way for people to mix, to share the city in a much deeper way"

The French architect and winner of the 2017 European Prize for Architecture tells us why she is determined to surprise

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
Interview: Blurred lines
Scott Lee became president of SB Architects in 2000. Tracy Lee founded TLee Spas in 2015
"We design to connect the guest to the place, positioning people at the centre of the design"

Architect Scott Lee and spa consultant Tracey Lee on marrying the worlds of design and wellness in a series of interesting projects

Last word: Tina Norden
Tina Norden
"We have created an approach which is playful, provocative but also functional"

Conran and Partners’ Tina Norden on playing with colour at Prague’s newly redesigned Hotel Maximilian

features
Alan Metcalfe
"When people are a bit scared, they gather together"

Featuring a vibrating glass platform and one of the US’s longest tree canopy walks, Whiting Forest has been designed to bring visitors closer to nature and to one another

Zaha Hadid Architects’ Hamburg River Promenade scheme
"Funding woes and murky timelines are common problems. It can be easier to make a difference one small project at a time"

From parks designed to mitigate the effects of flooding to warming huts for one of the world’s coldest cities, these projects have been designed for increasingly extreme climates

Interview: Elizabeth de Portzamparc
Elizabeth de Portzamparc
"We need to stop the destruction of our world through predatory practices. We need to think of the future"

The architect behind Nimes’ Musée de la Romanité on designing to counter loneliness and the need for more cultural buildings

cladkit product news
Móz Designs columns anchor the world’s largest indoor aquarium
The design of the columns was inspired by the sea
Magali Robathan
After a two-year renovation, Oakland-based metal experts Móz Designs have unveiled their inclusion in Georgia Aquarium’s new shark gallery. Located ...
Jaffe Holden helps bring Academy Museum of Motion Pictures alive
Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics for the Academy Museum
Magali Robathan
Acoustical consulting firm Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics and audio/video design services for the recently opened Academy Museum of Motion ...
Alberto Apostoli designs tech-forward Wellness Therapy furniture collection for Varaschin
The furniture collection draws on absolute geometries, pure lines, neutral colours and strong references to nature
Megan Whitby
Furniture manufacturer Varaschin has unveiled the new Wellness Therapy range, designed by Italian spa and wellness architect and designer Alberto ...
cladkit product news
Codelocks develops new glass door smart lock
The new lock model allows facilities and building managers to create and manage access via an app or online portal
Megan Whitby
Codelocks has launched its first glass door smart lock to bring intelligent access control to modern spa, leisure, fitness and ...
Alberto Apostoli and Newform collaborate to launch the A.Zeta showerhead
The showerhead offers two modes; rainfall or waterfall
Megan Whitby
Italian architect Alberto Apostoli has renewed his partnership with Newform – an Italian wellness company – and designed A.Zeta. A.Zeta ...
Eden project uses drones to spell out climate change warning
Magali Robathan
Almost 300 drones were used to signal an environmental message above the Eden Project’s biomes, during the UN Climate Change ...
cladkit product news
Fabio Alemanno Design uses elegant semi-precious stones to create memorable spa experiences
Alemanno believes the stones are well-placed in the spa environment thanks to their capacity to positively support physical and mental health
Megan Whitby
Fabio Alemanno Design has expanded its collection with semi-precious stones to enhance spas, wellness facilities, hotels and private residences. The ...
Cosm unveils Experience Centre with ‘one of a kind’ LED dome
The new Experience Centre houses a 20m LED dome
Magali Robathan
Cosm, a global technology company that builds end-to-end solutions for immersive experiences, has unveiled its Experience Centre which houses a ...
Diamond balloon concept merges tourist attraction with advertising billboard
Magali Robathan
A group of Dutch engineers have presented a new attractions concept that combines a flying observation cabin with LED digital ...
x
Sign up with CLAD for regular news updates
Technogym
Technogym