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with SLEE & CO ARCHITECTS
Hansgrohe & Duravit showroom extension
Design & Project Architect
Completed April 2004
Responsibilities and Duties Performed:
Conceptual through to Detail Design
Hansgrohe is a highly respected German sanitary fittings (taps, showers and accessories) manufacturer, with its South African distribution centre based in Midrand outside Johannesburg. It is often paired with Duravite sanitary fixtures (baths, basins and toilets), and both brands are displayed in the distribution centre showroom. Due to market growth and range expansion, the showroom required extension.
Slee designed the original showroom, which consists of a simple rectangular high volume barn with a linear plan, defined by heavy masonry side walls and openings at either end, with Mediterranean tile roof with expressed rafters. The new showroom linked into the existing in a coincidental fashion along its axis, acknowledging the dominance of the original.
Conceived as the first of a series of duplicate display cubes, the new building has a distinct cross axis plan again defined by walls and openings. However, this time the structure is lightweight, contrasting with the heavy masonry of the existing building, touching both it and the earth lightly.
The steel structure was factory manufactured and assembled on site. Its cladding is a ventilated double skin, reinforced in its lower half to support continuously changing wall-hung installations. The height of the building was determined by the maximum available length of the required performance glazing.
Following completion, the scope was extended to include the renovation of the interior to the existing showroom, which received pivoting display panels.
TEAM: Chapman Leijenaar (design & project architect; Johann Slee (principle)