Different studies and research were conducted prior to beginning the design process of the Sepehr Tower. The design of this project was not simply a typical commercial/office space, or purely architectural form, but a public/urban space: something that over time has been lacking in cities like Tehran. This project concentrates on urban citizenship and the effect of urban development on the physical and psychological health of its residents. Currently, in cities like Tehran, vehicles are taking over most of the city’s circulation paths and its public spaces.
The city’s expense and the distance between different activities has reduced pedestrian traffic to a minimum.Additionally, while advancements in science and industry have provided more human comforts, it also had significant effects on the lives of contemporary urban residents, particularly in Tehran. Some of these effects are clearly visible to every resident of Tehran: pollution, a disconnection between urban residents and nature, lack of safety in urban spaces, etc. These result in various mental/physical illnesses, reduce social/individual productivity, reduce life spans, increase social crimes, and countless other problems.
Another issue of special attention in designing Sepehr Tower was the increase in the number of elderly, and the cultural, economic, and social effects of this phenomenon. Most Iranians feel a certain responsibility toward the elderly members of their families, however, the elderly don’t have suitable urban spaces designed to provide them with comfort and leisure. By designing appropriate spaces, the social burden can be reduced. In utilizing experiences of this group, a step in advancing the social health of the city can be taken. Following the issues mentioned above, this project took shape around the needs and circulation patterns of people, based on Ellen Longer’s reversing aging experiment at Harvard University, that one can actually increase the quality of life and well-being through thoughtful architectural design.
Creating passages, circulation pathways, urban corners interaction, green spaces along pathways, plazas, and connections between interior and exterior circulation paths, increase the quality of space, making it more attractive. In a dense urban fabric, open urban spaces designed for social interactions, also act as breathing spaces for the city itself. Indeed, in this project, the central open space provides an area for public interaction.
The volume of the tower has been placed on the northern part of the site, with an open terrace on the eighth floor providing views of the mountains on the north side of Tehran and the city itself. The central terrace separates the “health” office spaces from the rest, of the offices, and connects to the green roof of the commercial section and Elahieh Avenue via ramps and stairs.
Oblique cuts on the tower’s volume create different terraces that provide green spaces along the height of the tower while making the volume itself variable. The office volume has a central core for vertical circulation including elevators and stairs leading to a lobby on the first floor, designed exclusively for the office spaces. This lobby also provides access to Elahieh Avenue via a series of wide exterior stairs.