The Butterfly Pavilion, designed by 3deluxe, with its shiny gold shade roof visible from afar, forms the architectural centrepiece of the Noor Island Park designed by 3deluxe. Noor Island is a fallow island off the coast of the desert metropolis of Sharjah.
The impressive, organically shaped steel structure of the butterfly house is covered in thousands of star-shaped metal blossoms, which paint ornamental patterns on the inside glass pavilion as the sunlight shines through them. In addition to a tropical rainforest habitat that is home to some 500 exotic butterflies, the building with the expressive design accommodates a souvenir shop and a café with an atmospheric ambiance.
Consisting of three interlocking segments, the roof covers an area of 800 square meters. Visitors find themselves standing inside an organic shell on tree-like steel columns with nine support points around the periphery. It is reminiscent of the cocoon spun by a butterfly. The steel supporting structure is secured by a
continuous, 3D edge girder, which absorbs the strain on the roof, and by a network of nodes and triangular connections. The challenge with the steel elements, which were calculated using the finite element method (FEM), was to systemize the 4,000 individual nodes theoretically required in such a way that ultimately only 600 were needed to achieve the correct balance between variation and effectivity. The load-bearing steel structure and the aluminum petals, which are only 3 mm in thickness, converge at every node, adopting a large number of different angle brackets at several levels. Thus a flickering roof of petals emerged, beneath which connections and screw joints run invisibly.
Light is a central theme in Arab culture, so special attention was paid to matching the gold tones and gloss levels of the materials to form a homogeneous colour whole. The challenge was that the differently coated and coloured components had to withstand sun and salt water and thus meet maritime requirements. Steel girders were painted in a special colour, nodes powder-coated and blossoms anodised.
In the evening, a special building choreography sets in. The individually controllable LED lights integrated into the nodes dynamise the supporting structure. Light patterns wander across the façade, the pavilion suddenly resembles a swarm of butterflies that come together and drift apart again to ever new rhythms.
With Noor Island Park, 3deluxe gave an answer to the global challenge of developing new urban spaces that offer both stimulation and contemplation, incorporate electronic media in their design and yet take the place and its culture seriously. On Noor Island, a landscape garden of the 21st century was thus created, in which technology and nature, light and shadow, modernity and tradition merge into a complex spatial experience. The entire, formerly forgotten and barren island has today developed into a magnificent, green oasis.
In the evenings the building is orchestrated in a special way – the individually controllable LED lamps integrated in the nodes galvanize the supporting structure. Patterns of light make their way across the façade and the pavilion suddenly resembles a swarm of butterflies coming together in ever-changing rhythms before drifting apart again.
|Service phases (HOAI)||SP 1 to SP 5|
|Location||Sharjah City, U.A.E.|
|Client||Shurooq, Sharjah Invest & Development Authority, U.A.E|
|Roof construction||Seele middle east, Dubai, U.A.E.|
|Pavilion construction||Waagner Biro Gulf L.L.C., Dubai, U.A.E.|
|Interior works||Candido Hermida, Spain|
|Media technology, lighting||HB-Laserkomponenten GmbH, Germany|
|Planting||Greenworks, Dubai, U.A.E.|
|Photography||Torsten Seidel, Sascha Jahnke, Stephan Lauhoff, Joaquín Busch, Björn Asmussen, Christian Bauer|
»It was really an amazing experience! They feature a serene sanctuary to reconnect with nature and modern art all at once! It is a perfect place to visit for family, friends and couples who seek an escape for the city life.«
NOOR ISLAND IS THE THIRD MOST POPULAR EXCURSION DESTINATION OUT OF 164 IN SHARJAH 2023 & AWARDED AS TRIP ADVISOR'S "HIGHEST RECOGNITION"