SOUTHEAST ASIA BUILDING08 Feb 2022
Goettsch Partners completes Mennica Legacy Tower in Warsaw
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Chicago, USA – Global architecture firm Goettsch Partners (GP) announced the completion of Mennica Legacy Tower, a new 115,000-square-metre, two-building office complex in Warsaw anchored by mBank, one of Poland’s largest banking institutions, and leading co-working provider WeWork. Located at the intersection of Prosta and Żelazna streets in the CBD, the 35-storey and 10-storey office buildings open to a large, landscaped plaza, with a pedestrian path that winds between them. The project was developed by an affiliate of Golub & Company LLC and Mennica Towers GGH MT Sp z o.o. S.K.A., and delivered in collaboration with Epstein, a design firm with offices in both Chicago and Warsaw that served as the architect and engineer of record, as well as the structural and MEP design engineer.

Part of a newly approved master plan in the CBD of Warsaw, the development is divided into the taller main tower on the east side of the site and the smaller building on the west side. The project includes approximately 80,000 square metres of Class A office space, a conference centre, fitness centre and ground-level retail, as well as four levels of underground parking and ancillary services. Large, public open spaces around and between the two structures provide outdoor seating and a variety of landscape features.

“The project is much more than a signature new office complex,” said James Goettsch, FAIA, chairman and co-CEO at GP. “Integrally connected to its central urban plaza, the development creates a unique ‘sense of place’ that enhances the public realm of Warsaw.”

The overall massing and shape of the complex was guided by the local master plan. More than 60 percent of the site is dedicated to outdoor public areas, exceeding the plan guidelines. The stepped arrangement of the two buildings, as well as the sculpted, sloped top of the tower, specifically respond to requirements that allow daylight into adjacent residential buildings.

 The main tower features rounded corners on the northeast and southwest sides that help to reduce the visible length of the east and west facades; on the opposite corners, the tower incorporates a strong vertical edge. The southeast and northwest corners are each further distinguished by a vertical recess that breaks up the building’s mass and introduces a dominant feature. The southeast corner, in particular, steps outward in three-floor increments as it rises, opening the recess to the sky and creating a dynamic profile that becomes a glowing beacon at night. A sloping screen wall at the building’s top enhances the profile, and the textured, saw-toothed facades give the enclosure an ever-changing appearance as one moves around the building.

 “The tower’s unique profile helps define it as a city landmark,” says Joachim Schuessler, GP design principal. “Its stepped, curved façade further distinguishes it in the skyline from all angles.”

 A three-storey lobby with a cable-supported enclosure utilizes a transparent glazing that blurs the boundary between interior and exterior space. The tower core is clad with large stone slabs that accentuate the solid mass of the core, in contrast to the lightness of the building’s lobby. The 2,000-square-metre tower floor plate provides an almost column-free space with 11- to 13-metre lease spans and a 1.35-metre planning grid.

The complex’s triple-glazed, high-performance facade with integrated operable panels supplies fresh air to occupants and combines state-of-the-art building enclosure technology with an appealing aesthetic. Large landscaped outdoor terraces on the fifth level of the main tower and the eighth level of the west building provide exterior amenity spaces with sweeping views that engage the city.

Officially completed in November 2020 with photography recently released, the complex marks GP’s first completed project in Poland.