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Daiichi Properties Rebrands With One World Place 

One World Place 32nd Street main façade and entry. Image © Gensler

On May 12, the Gensler-designed One World Place tower won Best Office Development – Philippines at the Asia Pacific Property Awards ceremony held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. When it opens in January 2015, the building will play a central role in a corporate rebranding campaign for Daiichi Properties and Development, which wants to strengthen its position with large commercial tenants in the global market while remaining attractive to local business process outsourcing (BPO) and knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) clients.

Our involvement with the project started in mid-2011, when Daiichi Properties approached Gensler for help designing an exterior enclosure for a new 32-story office tower development in Bonifacio Global City, Philippines. The initial work plan was straightforward: Create a building exterior and develop a logo that would make a splash in the up-and-coming residential, retail, and business hub of Metro Manila.

One World Place 32nd Street main façade and entry. Image © Gensler

Bonifacio Global City is a growing economic powerhouse in southeastern Asia. It was once the site of a United States Army base, and after the Philippines regained possession of the land several attempts at creating a comprehensive master plan for the area resulted in a unique overlay of orthogonal and round circulation grids. This arrangement created challenging geometry and small lot sites for future planning. The 32-story office tower was planned to sit on a lot of 1,790 s.m. in size, with a floor plate of about 1,100 s.m. of gross floor area. Total building construction size is 49,374 s.m. Efficiently fitting a building program within such a relatively small floor space posed a significant challenge to our design team.

Though Daiichi Properties initially hired Gensler to develop an exterior enclosure for the tower, our role in the project quickly grew. Daiichi asked Gensler to review the existing planning of the building with set programming criteria, to design all of the public spaces in the building (including ground floor access with main lobby and elevator lobbies at each floor), and to propose a new design for elevators and restrooms. Parallel to the development of exterior façade design and interior concepts, Daiichi also asked Gensler to brand the new building with a new name and building signage.

Visioning sessions conducted between the client and members of the design team examined how the building’s mixed-use components could accommodate a wide range of tenant activities, including retail banking on main 32nd Street, spaces for small businesses facing Lane R Drive, and BPO/KPO/corporate work spaces in the rest of the tower. The goal was to seamlessly integrate the building with the surrounding business and hospitality districts. Gensler’s design team came up with the name One World Place to reference Daiichi’s aspiring global positioning and to attract BPO/KPO clients, as well as larger corporate clients.

One World Place 32nd Street main façade and entry. Image © Gensler

The visioning sessions also targeted a LEED Silver rating. To earn LEED Silver, our design team integrated multiple high-performance envelope concepts—including daylighting, natural ventilation, highly efficient insulated glass, and solar-reflective coating—with high glazing ratio and glass visible light transmittance, exterior and interior shading devices. We also included efficient mechanical systems, onsite rainwater collection, and gray water use. This level of sustainability will help mitigate the region’s unique climatic and economic challenges, providing natural ventilation in a typhoon-dominated area while creating high-energy efficiency in Manila, a city with some of the highest electric rates in Asia.

One World Place typical exterior wall assembly. Image © Gensler

The final component that resulted from this project was crafting a building mission that rebrands Daiichi Properties as an emerging player in the real estate market and promotes the growth of a new corporate business address in the Philippines. Daiichi’s values and strong relationships with clients are an integral part of their business. The design elements we developed directly relate to this theme. One World Place will feature a sleek modern feel that is right at home within an emerging business haven, while simultaneously embracing the characteristics that make the Philippines such a distinctive country. This is translated in the building’s richly designed interiors, which reference the materials and crafts of the Philippine Islands.

Over the last two years, Gensler’s relationship with Daiichi Properties has evolved to the next level. Currently we are working with Daiichi on developing a second office tower in Bonifacio Global City called World Plaza, along with integrated building signage and identity. Together, these projects represent the symbolic evolution of an intermediate company and its move, now as a well-established developer, into the higher ranks of the Manila and Philippines real estate property market.

Although Gensler is busy in Manila, other parts of Southeast Asia and Oceania also provide exciting opportunities. Our firm is active in a new high-rise project in Jakarta and commercial developments in Singapore, and our expertise in workplace design has lead to projects in Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand. We are about to begin work in Myanmar on mixed-use projects, opening an exciting new market for multiple practice areas.

One World Place award: Best Office Development – Philippines

Sasha Zeljic is a regional practice area leader for Commercial Office Buildings in Gensler's Chicago office. With a strong emphasis on research and implementation of sustainable design, Sasha is particularly interested in exterior envelopes and conceptually advanced high-performance building façades. Contact him at aleksandar_zeljic@gensler.com.

Reader Comments (2)

Looks so charming and beautiful.. Every building is fabulous!
10.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterShiene Lopez
Thank you Shiene.
08.7.2014 | Unregistered CommenterSasha Zeljic

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