Dubai Design Week Leaf-Lids Market

Key principles

Urban performance design, Public space, Climate responsive design, Lightweight structures, Structural design, Value engineering, Design development, Architectural visualization


Year: 2020
Country: Dubai, UAE
Client: Dubai Design District

The concept of the Leaf-lids market is inspired by the lightweight and tropical foliage that shades and patterns the forest ground. The aim is to create a never dull urban pattern of structures by utilizing a smart assembly and a responsive system. The pattern doubles as a kinetic user-controlled shading system at daytime, a lighting element at nighttime, and a façade control system.

The LeafLids concept intention is to keep and airy urban space without obstructing the urban visual spine. This is done through splitting the design into the upper part (the leaves) and the lower part (the wooden pattern) and keeping the middle part (the Void) and the human eye level as visually connected as possible throughout the market.

The module concept is built upon an optimized typology of radial framing system. The central point of the system becomes the structural, electrical, and mechanical backbone of the market huts.

The radial framing system connect to the leaf which is made with tensile membrane (PVC coated polyester) with 10% translucency. With these specs the leaf acts as effective lightweight and sturdy shading element as well as an artificial-light diffusing membrane. The leaves are connected through hinges to the framing system and thus can rotate around an axis connected between the end of the frames. At daytime, the leaves can be lowered to maximize shading of the rising sun while at night the leaves open as an urban lit signaling artifact.

The lower wooden louvered skin revolves around the huts with different heights to accommodate for diverse inner and outer functions. The louvered skin disappears to the ground to signal an entrance to the huts while it goes to 40 cm height to enable a bench or goes to full height to become a countertop.

The Huts are weather proofed through ETFE membrane that is UV resistant and highly reflective to the sun light through membrane fritting.