Sheel Sansare


For this assignment I decided to do a study on a high-rise office building shape in San Francisco. The building follows a tube or donut shape with a circular outer area with an interior hole cut out in the plan view.

Step 1 - Generative Design Framework

For a high-rise office building, I decided that the important design decisions would be the economics, architecture, and structural design.

  • Building Economics
    • Design Variables
      • Plan Area
      • Building Height
      • Number of Floors
      • Location (average rent/cost)
    • Evaluators
      • Total Construction Cost
      • Annual Revenue from Rentable Space
    • Most Important Tradeoffs to Consider
      • Cost vs Revenue
      • Height vs Area
  • Architecture
    • Design Variables
      • Building Height
      • Interior Opening Radius / Exterior Radius Ratio
      • Number of Floors
    • Evaluators
      • Number of Office Window Views
      • Ease of Access around Space
      • Window Access to Natural Light
    • Most Important Tradeoffs to Consider
      • Building Height vs Cost
      • Exterior Radius vs Interior Opening Radius
  • Structural Design
    • Design Variables
      • Building Height
      • Building Weight
      • Location (wind/earthquake)
    • Evaluators
      • Max Top Deflection
      • Service Life
    • Most Important Tradeoffs to Consider
      • Height vs Weight
      • Height vs Loading Conditions

Step 2 - Generative Design Study

  • Objective: Maximize usable office space and cash generated from office space while minimizing building footprint
  • Model: A tube shape cylindrical structure with an internal cutout as shown in the image above
  • Design Variables: For this the inputs I included are:
    • Building Height (20ft to 600ft)
    • Inner Radius (5ft to 14ft)
    • Outer Radius (15ft to 50ft)
  • Constants: The constants are:
    • Floor height (10ft)
    • Rent/SF/Year ($66.52/SF/year)
  • Evaluators: The output evaluators I chose were:
    • Annual Dollars Generated from Rent (maximize)
    • Usable Office Plan Area (maximize)
    • Outer Plan Area/Building Footprint (minimize)
  • Interpretation:

I first chose the evaluation metrics that I found important for my case of a high-rise office building. For this case it is important to think about the building footprint because there is not much space in a city like SF. Additionally it is important to maximize the rentable office within this footprint so the metrics I cared about was maximizing the usable office plan area which also relates to the money that the office space can generate per year.

Once I decided these metrics, I thought about which parameters would be most important to vary. I decided that building height was important because it is a high-rise building, but also that the inner and outer radius of the building are important to change the building footprint and usable area.

I purposely chose evaluation metrics that contrasted each other. For example, the amount of money generated from the building is inversely proportional to the building footprint.

Step 3 - Generative Design Study Results

Here are some of the generated alternatives:


Here is the scatter plot for height vs $ generated per year:


Here is the scatter plot for outer radius vs $ generated per year:


I am surprised by the results of the height vs. $ generated plot because I thought it would be more linear (that all shapes with a large height would generate a lot of money). The outer radius vs. $ generated plot is what I expected, although there are a few outliers in the bottom right that would need to be investigated. The results of these generated designs are very useful to test assumptions and to find designs that need to be further investigated. It is useful to allow the computer to be creative with alternatives given the constraints set by the human. Given the plots generated, I would choose a design with a large height, medium outer radius, and small inner radius.

The dynamo graph for this study is shown below: