Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

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Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

Architect Ole Scheeren has designed a skyscraper for Kuala Lumpur that will have a four-storey-high tropical garden slicing through its middle.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

The Angkasa Raya tower will be 268 metres high and is to be situated alongside the Petronas Twin Towers, which were the tallest buildings in the world between 1998 and 2004.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

A restaurant, bar and infinity swimming pool will be nestled amongst the garden floors, while 280 apartments will occupy the storeys above.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

The lower levels of the building will house shops, cafes, car parks and prayer rooms.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

A luxury hotel will be located inside a smaller adjoining block.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

Construction is due to begin at the start of 2012.

Angkasa Raya by Buro Ole Scheeren

Ole Scheeren was formerly a partner at OMA, where he led the design of the China Central Television Station in Beijing, but left in 2010 to start his own firm – see our earlier Dezeen Wire.

Here's a description of the project from Buro Ole Scheeren:


Ole Scheeren to build landmark tower in Kuala Lumpur

Ole Scheeren, the architect behind one of the most iconic buildings of the 21st century, the CCTV headquarters in Beijing, today revealed his design for a new landmark tower in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. The 268 meter tall tower, Angkasa Raya, was unveiled today at an official ceremony in the capital, and will stand as a symbol of Malaysia’s diverse and multi-cultural society.

In 1998, Kuala Lumpur made world news for constructing the tallest skyscrapers in the world – the Petronas Twin Towers. Today, Malaysia will once again appear on the world stage with a stunning new piece of architecture that alters the perception of what a skyscraper can be and how it connects to the city by inviting life into its balancing heights and visually projecting it back into the urban landscape.

Commissioned by leading Malaysian property developer Sunrise Berhad (a member of UEM Land Holdings Berhad), the new tower will stand directly across the Petronas, offering new architectural qualities to the vibrancy of the city’s inner core. Rather than a single mass, Angkasa Raya is made up of three cubic volumes which appear to float above open, horizontal layers. The “ground levels” form an interconnected spiral of both pedestrian and vehicular circulation and draw the diversity of the streetscape into the building. A multitude of public spaces and activities including shops, a food court, car parks, terraces and prayer rooms bring urban life into the transparent stacks, while tropical nature invades and enlivens its multiple levels.

A second stack of horizontal slabs is lifted up in the air and hovers above the city. These “sky levels” contain a restaurant, bar, and multi-function spaces amid lush vegetation, giving the public access to one of the city’s most breathtaking views across its skyline and the neighboring Twin Towers. The three floating blocks accommodate the high-end Service Residences, a Luxury Hotel and Premium Offices.

Angkasa Raya demonstrates possibilities for the amplification of life and activities within the heart of one of Asia’s great capitals. Lush green gardens and terraces offer intimacies within the extreme urban density of the surrounding metropolis, while carefully shaded facades and a naturally ventilated atrium underline the environmental responsibility of the design.

With demolition of the existing building on the site completed in August 2011, construction is set to begin in the first quarter of 2012.

Angkasa Raya Project Description

Angkasa Raya, situated in Malaysia’s capital at the intersection of Jalan Ampang and Jalan P. Ramlee, directly across the well-known Petronas Twin Towers in the heart of Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC), presents a new typology in high-rise skyscraper design that overtly expresses the inhabitation of diverse urban activities in a tropical environment and captures the vibrancy of the city’s multifaceted culture.

Angkasa Raya is comprised of five distinct elements – three floating elevated tower blocks and two multi-level zones of open horizontal slabs – that are autonomous yet connected to one another in a uniquely stacked and shifting configuration of varied functional and urban typologies. Rather than competing with the Twin Towers in the form of another “twin” or blending into the surrounding context of singular towers on a podium, Angkasa Raya offers a new contemporary reading of the capital city and stands as an icon of the harmonious and dynamic balance of Malaysia’s cultural multiplicity and diversity.

At a height of 268 meters over 65 floors, and 165,000 square meters of construction area, Angkasa Raya accommodates Premium Offices, a Luxury Hotel and Service Residences. Each function occupies one of the three rectangular volumes which, through their mutual support and delicate balance, generate a unity that is both multiple and symbiotic.

The “Ground Levels”, a series of open horizontal slabs, bring urban life into the building and unfold two interconnected spirals of vehicular and pedestrian circulation, mixing signature retail, restaurants/cafes, a food court, and prayer rooms with abundant outdoor greenery and urban streetscape.The plural trajectories weave through the open levels and offer multiple street-like experiences of interconnected activities. A grand staircase welcomes the public to the second floor of the Ground Levels and provides an amphitheatre-like seating area with views towards the Petronas Twin Towers and Suria KLCC.

Moving beyond the typical model of inert multi-level parking podiums, the open framework of the Ground Levels introduces and extends the coexistence of urban activities and injects exciting public spaces into the heart of the building. While multi-story parking podiums are typically seen as an urban blight, this integrated model of multi-use indoor-outdoor activity fuses multicultural programs into a system of civic inclusivity and public accessibility.

At the virtual intersection between the three tower blocks, 120 meters above the city, are four levels of tropical greenery and metropolitan activity: the Sky Levels. Catapulting the public energy of the Ground Levels skywards, a signature bar and restaurant with outdoor dining terraces, an infinity edge pool, as well as a multi-function banquet hall, business lounges and meeting rooms offer premium work and leisure space in a lush environment with spectacular elevated views of the dramatic skyline.

The Service Residences, a family of high-end condominiums, are located in the upper tower block from floor 37 to 64and grouped around a naturally ventilated atrium. Over 280 units of studios, one to three bedroom apartments and duplexes, as well as penthouses benefit from the stunning views of the surrounding cityscape.

The luxury Hotel occupies the smaller tower volume facing Jalan Ampang. With more than 200 suites of varying sizes, a distinct type of short-term city dwelling complements Angkasa Raya’s offerings.

The Premium Offices in the lowest and largest tower block provide flexible floor space facing the Petronas Twin Towers at one of the city’s most prestigious addresses.

The carefully calibrated offsetting of the tower volumes with the Ground and Sky Levels creates a series of outdoor landscape and activity terraces that provide numerous moments of tropicality that punctuate Angkasa Raya in the form of lush vegetation, thereby maximizing the amount of green areas within the dense site. Hotel guests will enjoy dedicated amenities including a business center, club lounge and café, fitness center, and outdoor lap pool. The Service Residences are likewise equipped with its own set of dedicated facilities on top of the Sky Levels – lap pool, Jacuzzi, Children’s pool, gym, and an expansive landscaped garden.

The tower façades are clad with modular aluminum sun-shading, geometrically optimized and carefully oriented to reduce solar heat gain under the intense tropical sun, and contribute to substantial energy savings through passive means. Other environmental features include a naturally ventilated atrium within the Residences Tower, eliminating the need for air conditioning and recirculation. By connecting the atrium through a series of large- scale voids to the building envelope, natural daylight is provided throughout the vertical space while communal seating areas and tropical lounges are created within the atrium. Rainwater harvesting, landscape re-irrigation, insulated green roofs, and the natural shading effects of the horizontal slabs of the Ground and Sky Levels effectively reduce the energy and water consumption and optimize the carbon footprint of the building.

  • meh

    das ist so on-trend

  • fpc02

    booooooooooooooooring.recyling of museum plaza highrise.cmon ole u can do better than this.

  • chris

    that window projection detail is marcel breuers…

  • Eric B

    recycling? hardly, looks like this was pulled directly out of Rem's rubbish bin.

  • tgaamd

    You have to find your own architecture. When I saw this project, I thought: "this is a OMA's project."

    • stang

      you know he was at OMA for years…for all we know that is his aesthetic that he brought to OMA

    • H-J

      That's because Ole Scheeren was the partner -in-charge for some of OMA's most interesting projects, so in a way when you look at OMA's project you can say: "this is a Ole Scheeren project."

      • oles best friend

        this is ridicoulous, just because ole smiles (or tries to look "architectural") in every camera available in front of cctv, it is still an OMA project.
        there were many good people involved in the projects developed at OMA, the office usually does not work with this "my project"- thinking, only ole does this and claims credit for everything.
        and the saddest thing is, that so many believe him.
        there are guys like bjarke ingels who develop their own stuff and move on, and then there is ole putting his stamp on every OMA project that he walks by….

  • tgaamd

    But whatever….. I forgot to say, this is a very good project. Congratulations!

  • http://www.granitetransformations.com/blog Alex Levin

    good catch. it's a similar look but greener — that's what i love about this. imagine going to the park directly from your highrise apt. :)

  • John

    for more images, see the website. http://www.buro-os.com/angkasa-raya/

  • Kelly

    another skyscraper with plants shoved into it to illustrate how "green" it is. getting a little tedious…

  • http://www.buzzbooks-online.com DMJ

    Like the plants.

    As for the rest… zzz….

  • Lukas

    Museum Plaza rehatched! That was an OMA project with REX so Ole was not involved. All the other Ex-OMA would have done better like BIG

  • marisa

    architecture can be so literal sometimes….an extruded statistical graph of the nations ethnic demographic ?Honestly, Bok had more of a story to tell… .http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/portfolio/azrul/html/bokstart.html

    • Suvin

      The demolished Bok House is 2 lots away; not on the same lot as you seem to be implying? The message Ole's design sends out is questionable but it hardly merits comparison with the beautiful contextual anomaly that was the Bok House on Jalan Ampang.

  • gerry lo

    its so reminiscent..

  • Colonel Pancake

    I don't think the building is great (or even good), but I don't understand why architecture can't be derivative. Good architecture is good architecture. Who cares what similarities it shares to another's work? I would love to see more blatant ripoffs of Zumthor, Kuma, Pawson, etc.

  • UK87

    stang and H-J you are absolutely right.

    Congratulations Buro Ole Scheeren, a very promising start ..

  • https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=742756022 Chris Carlton

    mm… I'll take REX's spinoff stuff over this personally.

  • Peter

    Seriously I don´t know to how many Asian cities you guys have been travelling to, but replica or not, this design definitely contributes to the discurs of the contemporary design for skysrcapers in Asia. Unique semi-public interior/exterior spaces which slice through the "main tower" and a podium far from being a mere lobby with a security guy´s desk. Skyscrapers are some of the main typologies to be found in the major Asian cities and most of them hardly deal with cultural, contextual, climatic issues. Thanks Büro OS for this one.

  • DanCheong

    Ole is old to reference REX / OMA. Post OMA hang over. Well BIG got over that pretty well, so did REX actually. We do not need little OMAs.

  • Michele

    he was one of the jurors for this competition, now announced as the architect?

  • wasser

    Even many students could do it better.Look at the detail of facade…..Detail is architecture as well.
    BIG is best Ex-OMA.

    • zetre

      Not to many students get to build +200 m skyscrapers.
      I think it looks decent.
      I don't know why people think he should totally abandon the ideas and language he helped develop while at OMA.

    • zach

      I think it’s too early to talk facade details but overall building-wise, I’m eager to se if he can pull off all those tricky connection details to make the blocks and slabs as clean as they seem in the renderings. this won’t be an easy project and I can’t wait to see what happens.

  • K-Arch

    Isn't it a bit premature to judge detail from renders of a building scale? I don't expect to see facade brackets or thickness of material from a render showing mostly the scheme. Personally, I think the scheme is very exciting in the way public activities are accomodated and expressed. Have not seen so many skyscrapers like that…Nice work!

  • HH

    not so many mixed use high rise buildings can be as exciting as this one. I think the arrangement of programs and spaces make this project quite interesting. it’s not the most flashy form but it’s definitely a project with a lot of depth.

  • Sam

    Like it or hate it, lots of effort went into this. Look beyond the imagery and surface please.

  • Pow

    Amazing shading fins attempt. I would love to see how it work. This could redefine the new use of fins in modern buildings in the Tropics. We need more modern design for the climate!

  • aliG

    just read the blurb from his office, ‘Ole Scheeren, the architect behind one of the most iconic buildings of the 21st century, the CCTV headquarters ‘ – so that one has nothing whatsoever to do with rem koolhaas, oma, shohei, etc?? bit revisionist and manipulative of the facts, this guys biggest trick is playing the media.

    • Sean

      Totally agree with you aliG, it really shows when it’s just referencing blindly and creating something new . Fundamentally this fails both ways , as it’s a bad reference to so many projects. A bad cocktail!

    • oles best friend

      Thanks for that comment.
      It's so sad that the media is actually supporting his manipulative behaviour….

  • Azzedine

    Think it’s a great building for KL. Complements Petronas and isn’t another corporate glass-skinned tower…with exciting spaces that actually invite the public into it. Congrats!

  • Sam

    Delve a little deeper and try not to dwell just on the surface.

  • shazza

    As someone who actually lives in KL, this will be a great addition to the KLCC area. It will be good to have another anchor besides the Twin Towers. The open ground levels look exciting. Congrats Buro-os. Look forward to seeing the real thing.

  • BOS

    Disappointing…seems like a hotchpotch of many ideas taken from all sources but the becoming together does not say much

  • TheChief

    This project is going to be a wonderful addition in helping to increase the public activity at KLCC which currently is quite dismal besides the tourist influx.
    Looking forward to the views from those sky levels!

  • Malaysian

    such bored…. square n plain… he's out of new ideas.. but his earlier designs are good – China Central Television Headquarters

    • Beijinger

      He did not design CCTV, Shohei did…

      • XOMA

        Yeah, everyone knows that Shohei, Rem and the competition team won CCTV for OMA. Ole just got the golden ticket to ensure the project got built . Just ask the Ex-OMA people, they will tell you the hidden stories. He manipulates the media all the time. Now he has his own work, and its a bad copy..tsk tsk…

        • Sniper

          Don't forget about Fernando who was the key person along with Sho to initiate the cctv form, but the reality is they could not have brought it into fruition without the expertise of Ole.

  • Infinity

    The ex/post-OMA comments are irrelevant. We should be focussed on what this tower is adding to KL. On the ground level, it's re-enforcing and extending the public activities beyond KLCC. The greenness of the building is the first of it's kind in KL, who desperately needs to catch up with Singapore if it wants to be aligned as a major South East Asian city. The identity of this design is strong enough to be iconic and symbolic of this city. Great work Buro, looking forward to seeing the built result

    • Sean

      This is what rem was talking about generic prototypes which he is already now moving beyond that. How does this project address the Malaysian context way of life. Sorry taking museum plaza and plonking it here is not the way!! Sorry looks like this was picked up from the architects dumpster.

  • Malaysian No.2

    I'm Malaysian. And this is un-Malaysian. Poor effort – no linkage to context whatsoever. We don't need this sort of 'icon' or 'symbol'. Pack your bags and go home Ole !

  • Space 4 ev1

    …probably u preffer sth like that triangular top brown building next to it? That would be very Malasian in context wouldnt it?

    I think we´ve seen similar buildings in render phase, if the construction is starting next year I think its the first one ever built right?
    Cause if we´re gonna start comparing projects with images of other unbuilt pojects, should we start comparing with hand sketches of even older projects? So if eventually futuristic sketches from long ago seem similar to something thats getting built now… should we just critizise it and move on?
    Really short sighted people.. come on! At LEAST have the decency to compare with BUILT architecture!