Located in the prime area of Pantai Indah Kapuk (PIK) 2, Indonesia Design District (IDD) adopts a new urbanist concept as the largest and most comprehensive lifestyle centre in Indonesia. First of its kind in the country, this latest revolutionary development by Agung Sedayu Group, a leading property developer in Indonesia brought on board internationally acclaimed DP Architects (DPA) to bring their vision of a new retail experience to Indonesians and design enthusiasts alike. The world-renowned architecture firm’s director Rida Sobana shared with Indonesia Design DPA’s vision and design approach for IDD.
iD: What was the brief given by Agung Sedayu Group?
DPA: The brief was to plan and design a “Raksasa Mebel Center Terlengkap dan Terbesar di Indonesia” or a ‘giant furniture centre’ in a single storey on an eight-hectare site. The client was also specific in their request for a “modern furniture centre” characterised by artistry and design flair. It should differ from the conventional mall setup in Jakarta and be a space where patrons are encouraged to dwell outdoors and where tenants can host events.
iD: Share with us how well did you translate the brief in your design?
DPA: The brief presented some challenges but these were, in themselves, exciting opportunities to create a truly refreshing retail experience. Responding to the brief’s call for a single storey “modern furniture centre” on an 8-hectare site, we shifted from the standard interpretation of creating a furniture factory outlet to deliver a unique hub experience that dynamically blends retail and communal within a single development via a semi open-air mall concept. Our proposed design scheme, therefore, prioritises three things: connectivity, creativity and comfort.
Connectivity begets interaction and by extension, the sense of community. To achieve this, it was crucial to design the 8-hectare site to human-scale and with intuitive pedestrian pathways. The site is therefore, carefully planned into two zones – north and south. Each zone features grand drop-offs and an equal exposure to the main roads; namely, Jalan Sudirman in the south and Jalan Rasuna Said in the north. Surface parking is deliberately located along all four sides of the rectangular site. This allows equal access from the parking ground to the shops.
The expression of creativity is iterated by the ‘blank canvas’ feature that we’ve proposed for the façade of every shopfront. Intended to spark creativity among the tenants, it presents each with a unique opportunity to articulate and display their brand colours as an extension of their design aesthetic. In combination, it is envisioned to create a dynamic place of interest, which in itself, will deliver a WOW factor to the development.
A multidisciplinary approach to consider all climatic factor of the site is carefully studied to create a comfortable environment. By engaging in sun-path and wind-driven rain analysis in our design process, we were able to plan for continuous deep, covered walkways and well sheltered outdoor event spaces – a rare sight and feature in Jakarta.
To further encourage interaction and community, a spacious F&B cluster is positioned at the core of the site and made accessible to secondary drop-offs on the east and west of the site. Its semi-outdoor concept is designed to carefully gel and connect the north and south zones while serving as a ‘breathing space’ for patrons who need some refreshment while shopping. The design simultaneously integrates a spacious and covered event plaza within each zone and F&B cluster; offering opportunities for outdoor activities that allows for commingling within the design community and planned events that bring patrons and tenants together and/or are a celebration of design.
iD: The design concept is an open plan along all corridors, how do you address the wind and hot weather?
DPA: Here is where our focus on creating a comfortable environment is concentrated. Jakarta is renowned for its hot weather and heavy rains. For this reason, its retail malls have, to date, been designed as large, multi-storey, air-conditioned complexes.
In the case of the Indonesia Design District project, we countered this via a multi-disciplinary approach that involves careful study of site in consideration of all climatic factors from the design concept stage. These are to be complemented by thoughtful landscaping design and details, which includes big canopy rain trees within the social spaces such as the children’s playground, alfresco dining spots and green lawn areas and water features (e.g. ponds). Beyond aesthetics, they function as a passive cooling system providing shade and evaporative cooling of the microclimate, respectively; thereby, improving thermal comfort levels, which is crucial to encouraging visitors to explore the Design District and maximizing the delight of their experience regardless of the weather condition of the day.
The passive design strategies also function to deliver a more sustainable built environment. For example, with the goal of achieving zero runoffs, planters and strategically located absorption wells help to capture excess runoff which are gradually channeled downstream to prevent flooding during heavy thunderstorms. The design also applies green pavement blocks in the carpark spaces to encourage rainwater permeation into the underlying soil and gravel. Even the roofscape of the development is utilized. On it, we have catered space for rainwater holding tanks so that rain collected can be used for housekeeping activities such as floor washing and toilet flushing within the development.
iD: Compared to other projects, what is unique about this furniture centre?
DPA: Of all the projects that I have led, Indonesia Design District is a special one. For one, it is for a creative community that is close to my personal craft in architecture design. As an Indonesia-born architect who has had the opportunity to design, collaborate and showcase my works around the region, I understand what such a development will mean and can offer to compatriots within the field of design. So, to be able to envision and create such a space to serve and celebrate our local industries, artists and craftsmanship is a privilege unto itself.
While conceptualizing the design, we really took a deep look at the purpose of the development in conjunction to the aspirations of the nation, and recognized its potential to encourage creative collaboration between buyers, designers, investors and artists. This was how we then designed a playground for the creative community. To realise this, we tapped into our deep knowledge of local context and climate as well as our rich experience in complex, mixed-use retail projects such as Central Park and Kemang Village. Because the brief called for something outside of the norm, we also leveraged DP Architects’ extensive knowledge database of building forms and types, and its inter-disciplinary design approach to deliver a locally-relevant Indonesia Design District.
Secondly, as proponents of positive climate action against its breakdown and biodiversity collapse, the opportunity to realise an urban design scheme that responds to the global call for greener built environments gives the project added meaning and purpose. This is especially so when we consider how Indonesia Design District will be among the first semi-outdoor, carbon-conscious development of its kind in the country. We have articulated this through landscape design measures to re-introduce biodiversity into the site, passive design strategies to enhance natural ventilation and reduce reliance on electrical cooling systems and energy consumption, and wayfinding strategies to enhance connectivity on the site; all of which, work synergistically to contribute to creating more sustainable, resilient and delightful cities and communities.
IDD is home to leading brands in design and furniture with stunning architecture and shop designs to never-ending search for leisurely activities and welcoming experiences at every arrival. IDD is now open for booking limited to 200 tenants from various leading brands to be a part of a new lifestyle concept in the country.