Delivering Craft in Design, Digitally

Posted by Matthew Johnson on May 4, 2016
computational design

It's not just that we have the tools to design seemingly complex architecture. It's that the tools, with the right experience and knowledge, allow designers to not only determine an efficient approach to the "feature" but to allow us to optimize the underlying structural systems. For the Seneca Nation Cultural Center with SOSH Architects, computational design tools help us design and optimize the roof as well as find an efficient structural column grid within the constraints of the intended architectural program. It's a grid in name only; it has some symmetry in plan, but is optimized for the roof curvilinear roof geometry, unbalances loads, and thrust imparted by the complex roof geometry. 

The signature roof is a 32,000 sf roof with doubly-curved geometry and an maximum amplitude of 24 ft. Computational design, material expertise, and years of experience with fabrication/erection of similarly complex projects is helping SGH develop construction drawings and models  in similar levels of detail for both reinforced concrete and structural steel.  

Our ongoing partnership with CW Keller supports the project with offsite, digitally fabricated concrete formwork. Additionally, for the honeycomb inspired steel frame (pictured), CW Keller is similarly able to provide pre-skinned infill timber boxes inserted into the steel,  like puzzle pieces not dissimilar to the aptly titled kids game "Perfection," to complete the roof.

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