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MVRDV and BIG collaborate on lifestyle district and plaza in Abu Dhabi
05 Dec 2017 . BY Kim Megson
Dutch architects MVRDV have revealed designs for their inaugural project in the United Arab Emirates: a mixed-use residential and leisure district for Abu Dhabi’s high-profile Makers District
Photo: MVRDV
Dutch architects MVRDV have revealed designs for their inaugural project in the United Arab Emirates – a mixed-use residential and leisure district for Abu Dhabi’s high-profile Makers District.

Called Pixel, the 76,000sq m (818,000sq ft) development will consist of seven ‘pixelated’ mid-rise towers organised around a lively public plaza designed by Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), which steers people towards an adjacent beach, waterfront promenade, marina and public events space.

MVRDV’s towers are described by the practice as “an erupted valley” designed to “create a village-like feel with distinct spaces, pocket gardens and roof decks”. They will be home to retail, office, co-working and community spaces at lower levels, while 480 residential apartments of various types and sizes will occupy the upper levels.

The towers’ restrained and minimalistic exteriors – which blend natural ceramics and concrete to reflect the local climatic conditions – means they are only truly revealed to visitors and residents when they enter BIG’s central plaza and have a direct perspective of the shapes and colours hidden within the façades.

“As part of the waterfront development Makers District, Pixel will offer contemporary living in a dynamic setting for future residents, as well as both local and international creatives”, said Jacob van Rijs, MVRDV co-founder.

“All of the towers façades combine concrete with luminous ceramics on the inside – a nod to the region’s pearl diving heritage – and they'll be a vibrant and engaging community for creativity, learning and forward living."

MVRDV are working with engineering company Ramboll Middle East and local architecture firm Dewan. The project, scheduled for completion in 2020, is part of a wider 18-hectare masterplan developed by real estate firm IMKAN Properties.

The Makers District is located opposite Saadiyat Island’s Cultural District – home to the Zayed National Museum, Jean Nouvel’s recently-opened Louvre Abu Dhabi and the planned Guggenheim Abu Dhabi by Frank Gehry.
HIT HUB – the functional frame to unleash the athlete in everyone
22 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Escape Fitness has launched an innovative, space efficient frame-based solution for functional training in boutiques, studios and gyms looking to offer challenge, community, novelty and results to their experience-seeking member bases.
Gantner’s smart card technology – Helping build the foundation of networked fitness
22 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Technology in today’s health clubs is being increasingly geared towards creating an ultra- convenient, intelligent workout experience.
London's new pollution-eating living wall has air purifying power of 275 trees
21 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Commercial real estate company The Crown Estate has partnered with Westminster City Council and Evergen Systems to install a CityTree in London’s West End.
Versaclimber launches contra-lateral climbing edition
21 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Vertical cardio climbing machine Versaclimber has undergone a makeover, moving from its original up-down climbing pattern of movement to a contra-lateral or crawling pattern.
Picsolve to capture guest reactions on the Wicker Man
20 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Digital content solutions specialist Picsolve has installed it’s advanced on-ride image capture solution on Alton Towers’ incendiary new wooden coaster, Wicker Man.
Physical Company launches combat fitness range
20 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Physical Company has launched a comprehensive range of combat fitness equipment.
Technogym named as lead supplier for Nuffield Health
19 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
Nuffield Health has announced a new partnership with fitness equipment supplier Technogym, that will see the company become the key equipment provider for Nuffield Health.
FitQuest to launch next generation body analysis machine
19 Mar 2018 . BY Lauren Heath-Jones
UK-based performance specialists FitQuest has launched a second-generation version of it’s body composition machine.

WTS International is one of the world’s largest and most diversified spa consulting and spa management firms, creating memorable experiences while driving top line and bottom line results.

WTS International’s internal design team collaborates with the client’s design firm to focus on creative aesthetics and functional considerations that impact profitability for spas, fitness centres, and leisure facilities of all types.
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