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Center for Research and

Technological Enterprise


for the


National Research Foundation and 

National University of



As part of Singapore’s accelerating national thrust toward an inventive, innovative, and entrepreneurial economy, the  National Research Foundation retained Perkins+Will to design CREATE ( a Campus for Research Excellence And Technological Enterprise).  Awarded through an invited international design competition, CREATE is the gateway to the National University of Singapore’s eastward campus expansion.;  It is  a unique multi-national, multi-disciplinary research enterprise with the primary mission of stimulating innovation, discovery, and entrepreneurship through the interaction and collaboration of scientists and engineers. The National Research Foundation will attract research teams from top research institutions, corporations and leading universities from within Singapore and around the world.

The CREATE campus totals approximately 800,000GSF and is composed of  three mid-rise buildings interlaced with landscape and a high-rise tower sharing a covered pedestrian Town Center.  The tower engages a podium that houses student amentias at grade and CREATE’s headquarter facilities at level two.  Unlike traditional laboratory buildings that are wide and divided by interior partitions and corridors CREATE presents  long, column-free and unusually narrow building modules  that allow daylight to penetrate and naturally illuminate the  interior spaces, significantly reducing energy consumption. Views to the landscaped gardens are abundant enhancing the research environment. The tower, designed on the same narrow module  features a series of three-story vertical sky gardens accessible  from the upper levels.

The design pioneers advanced environmental sustainability and energy-efficient technologies, surpassing current flexibility, adaptability and performance benchmarks for scientific research facilities in the tropics. The buildings are oriented on the east/west axis for optimal solar control and to engage and collect natural flow of water from the hills to the east.  Several sustainable features are integral to the design including rain water harvesting from the canopies and plaza areas stored and used to fulfill basic water requirements,  roof and awning-mounted photovoltaic (solar) panel to generate power,  and  . and green roofs to reduce storm water runoff, and minimize  interior heat gain.   The landscape design, a restorative garden setting for flora and fauna was inspired by Singapore’s famous Botanical Gardens.

The architecture inspires interaction beyond the lab, through a rich and diverse sequence of shared and social spaces, that weaves form, space and light into places for collaboration and collision, disruptive innovation and contemplative solitude as essential ingredients of a productive research environment. . Singapore’s passion for gardens is culturally rooted in the belief that the human soul needs nature’s vitality to lift its spirit. Set in a garden, CREATE will be a vibrant place, a dense urban organism where the ecosystem, environmental art and scientific discovery meet in a union of opposites: a tower in the garden; science in the rainforest.

Design Completion Date / Construction Completion Date: 2011 



by Allison Grace Williams while Design Principal with Perkins+Will

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