Reflective rings on some of the uppermost circles of Cor are comprised of photovoltaic cells, or giant solar panels. In Miami's sunny climate, these will pick up solar energy day in day out another significant energy source to be channelled back into the building services. Similarly, solar rooftop panels will supplement the condominium tower's water heating requirements. The lazy circles of Cor's distinctive facade are also designed to help control the impact of wind and solar gain for the apartments.
The exoskeleton is a sheer concrete wall structure, providing thermal mass and solar shading for natural cooling and reduction of solar gains the south interior facade, for example, will be set back two metres from this to lessen the sun's impact. An organic look belies the highly strategic spacing that optimises climate-influenced living conditions. The reflective, off-white facade further resists solar gain and, similarly, glazing specifications across different orientations will reduce solar gains and maximise daylight penetrations. South and west facades will have darker, reflective coatings and all glazing will have a Low-E coating, reducing energy loss or solar gain by as much as 30-50%.
"Standing on terraces, residents can actually come to grips with the building's exoskeleton, literally, as the soaring walls also form part of the terrace bannisters. This hands-on proximity will add to owners' physical impression of Cor's mass," says Oppenheim.
The concrete skin itself will have a high fly ash content, a waste by-product from coal-fired power plants. This utilises what would otherwise be a pollutant to increase the concrete's strength and life expectancy.
Cor will offer green roofs that provide stormwater run off and a buffer for both solar heat gains and the urban heat island effect where on warm summer days, air in urban areas can be 10-12°C hotter than surrounding areas. This can place increased demand on air conditioning needs and raise pollution levels. Green roofs help to off-set this phenomenon. Cor features rainwater and other greywater runoffs to irrigate exterior landscaping features. Water runoff is simply stored in a tank and recycled on demand.
That Cor is lean as well as green is another important ecological plus. While building upwards may not be something new, it is an appropriate response to urban density. The alternative urban sprawl provides an ever-increasing drain on land and the massive amounts of energy required to drag people to and fro from suburb to city centre.
Attendant to this is Cor's mixed-use makeup, with residences and offices in harmonious coexistence. Energy-savings on a mass-transit scale, together with a heightened sense of local community, are at least two urban advantages. Retailers and eateries at Cor's ground level contribute to its focus as a social centre for residents, office workers and passers by.
Cor will be as green on the inside as it is on the outside. Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified wood has been specified for the interior's wood products, particularly flooring. Bamboo, an eminently renewable source, makes up its corridor floors and recycled glass tiles are used on the condominium bathrooms. Low-flow bathroom fixtures and appliances combine with sensor-activated tapware to bring more precious water savings. Energy star appliances and energy-efficient lighting will feature throughout the apartments, while Cor's paints, carpets and glues attract a low-emission volatile organic compounds (VOC) rating.