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Botschi Vargas flexes its modular muscle

Botschi Vargas Architects has collaborated with Arup to design this flexible modular building as a temporary venue for community activities and entertainment. Simple repetitive components are used to create a versatile building that can be easily erected and demounted using a prefabricated kit of parts. The basic structural unit is a triangular module that can be arranged in tandem, parallel to each other or in a cruciform to create different configurations.

The design incorporates low-energy heating and cooling strategies.

Underfloor heating pipes are manufactured in discrete sections so that heating can be limited to specific structural modules. The double-height entry space, for example, provides shelter from the elements but no additional warmth, whereas spaces further into the plan can be fully insulated and environmentally controlled.Hidden vents at roof level allow buoyant hot air out. Cooler outside air is drawn in through low-level grilles. An optional comfort cooling system could be installed if required.

The project was conceived by Botschi Vargas, which subsequently worked with Mohsen Zikri of Arup to develop the structural and environmental concepts.

The design team, which is seeking a client for the project, envisages the pavilion as a catalyst for the regeneration of deprived sites and a focus for community events. Costs vary according to specification, location and number of pavilions, but a base option of a single-skin envelope has a guide price of £1,560m 2excluding mechanical, heating and ventilation and external works.

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