Safdie Architects' staggered Qorner tower for Quito to feature “hillside of terraces”

Volumes stagger in and out to create planted balconies and overhangs at the edges of this residential tower that Moshe Safdie’s architecture firm has revealed for Quito, Ecuador.

Safdie Architects has designed the 24-storey Qorner for a small corner plot along Avenida Portugal – a busy shopping street in the Ecuadorian capital.

Floors will comprise a series of cuboids that are shifted in and out to form an undulated profile on the east- and west-facing sides.

Planted terraces at the ends will offer views of the cityscape – including the 165.5-acre (67-hectare) La Carolina Park on the western side, and volcanoes surrounding the city – while overhangs will provide shade.

“The building profile steps back to reveal a ‘hillside’ of terraces, and also steps forward to create a ‘cliff face’,” said the firm in a statement on its website.

Safdie Architects has teamed up with local construction firm Uribe & Schwarzkopf on the project, which will become one of the city’s tallest towers once built.

The firm came up with the stacked and staggered arrangement in response to the tight site, with the aim to offer residences access to outdoor space and natural light. All planting covering the building will be indigenous.

“We pride ourselves on developing projects unique to the place and programme, and at the same time, incorporating principles that have long guided our work,” said Moshe Safdie in a project statement.

“While our projects around the world are diverse, our principles remain steadfast for each one: access to green space, the maximisation of daylight and views in each dwelling, and fostering a sense of a ‘vertical neighbourhood’ wherein each apartment forms part of a greater whole.”

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