American University, Beirut
Zaha Hadid Architects
SHADING AT THE RIGHT ANGLE
The Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs (IFI) building was designed by Zaha Hadid Architects.
The design significantly reduces the building’s footprint by ‘floating’ much of the IFI’s facilities above the entrance courtyard to preserve the existing landscape integral to the 2002 master-plan, create a new public space for the campus, and establish links from the university’s Central Oval to the Middle Campus and Mediterranean Sea to the north.
The façades are treated with a patterning of windows and indentations. Many of these windows are of an irregular shape providing visual movement across the elevations. One of the workspaces included large floor to ceiling angled windows. This creates a striking architectural feature but does pose shading challenges.
In partnership with Libel based in Beirut, Guthrie Douglas designed and supplied angled parallelogram systems. These tension blinds were able to cope with the unusual shape of the windows whilst fitting with the sleek modern aesthetic.
Unconventionally shaped windows require specially designed blinds. To find out more about the blind shapes available from Guthrie Douglas please click here.