- October 31st, 2008
- in Yachting
The New Face of the Financial Sector – Next to the Government administration building is the site of the structure aimed at putting a different physical professional face to the financial sector of the British Virgin Islands. A project spearheaded by Lorna Smith and her husband, the former Chief Minister Dr. D. Orlando Smith, Lordan has been designed with specific goals in mind.
Lorna Smith recognizes the value of buildings catering to financial services professionals worldwide. Having travelled to global financial capitals such as London, Hong Kong , Switzerland, New York and the Middle East, Mrs. Smith appreciates that the BVI does business with these capitals and knows that the appearance of our own in the BVI is vital. “These capitals are extremely professional in their appearance,” she says. “They are our colleagues and our competition and having similar standards here, as one of the finance capitals immediately puts us ahead of the curve“
In terms of urban planning, Roger Downing Architects recognizes that the higher density of a five-storey building is both practical and attractive in light of an increasingly occupied space within Road Town. The hub of business and a hive of tourism, freeing up businesses condensed into specific spaces will, in turn, release more buildings such as those on Main Street to be used as areas for quaint coffee shops and tourist development.
This project did not happen overnight, nor is it speculative in nature. Mrs. Smith has owned the lot since 1993, and it has taken years of planning to get to this stage. Creating a comfort zone for global competitors is the aim of the Lordan project. Each of the five floors, complete with ocean views, is to be leased as open space, and there are plans for the ground floor to be let for retail and cafeterias.
We are excited to be involved with this project, with the hope of bringing another new contemporary style that encompasses environmental issues we all face today. Most important to an office building are human comfort and reducing the running costs. In this conceptual design, we have attempted to reduce the amount of direct sunlight hitting the southern faces of the building through the use of two different devices.
The most commonly accepted louvres that sit proud of the building shall still allow people on the interior good views, while shading the building’s face. We have also proposed a new concept (yet to be tested in our environment) called “Green Wall” (see images below). These are drip-fed panels attached to the wall. We are currently investigating this possibility with the hope it shall be self-sustainable and environmentally advantageous, both aesthetically and thermally.
In addition to the building being contemporary in style, we always attempt to retain some elements that are traditional to the BVI as an integral part of the building fabric; in this case, we are incorporating the traditional stonewall. The roof is designed to wrap over and down the western side, shielding the building from the westerly sun. The layout of Lordan’s shall be very flexible, so each half of the building can be rented individually or entire floors can be leased.
Roger Downing and Partner Company Limited, Architects and Interiors
has enjoyed 39 years developing both the built environment of the BVI and our relationships with clients. The company consists of an energetic, coordinated team of experienced professionals with the single goal of providing the best possible experience for both end users and clients alike.
RDP is continually implementing and researching the latest technologies in our Mac-based firm to stay on the cutting edge of the construction industry, in addition to expanding our knowledge base of Green Building Technologies and Philosophies.