Our building envelope is composed of two independent surfaces with a gap in-between. The external skin of the wall is of stone faced concrete, and the internal skin is of glass, with structural columns behind. The gap between the two is used for H.V.A.C. and other mechanical services.
Vertical ducts of the A.C. system are encased and rise between these skins from a peripheral service tunnel below grade. The entire building is thus served from the perimeter and maintained from the basement. A perforated metal floor is suspended between the ducts and acts as a balcony for people and art exhibits, for air and light, and for maintenance of the glazed surfaces. This solution reads and behaves as two independent envelopes – as a building within a building. It allows for great flexibility in window placement and in wall openings within its volumetric expression.
The transparent glass skin is set back from the external opaque stone skin in most parts of the building. Two elevations facing onto the lower courtyard depart from the stone enclosure and act as continuous curtain walls. Here the two sides of Bezalel view each other across their exhibition spaces that descend from the entry level to the public courtyard.
The proposed Air Conditioning System is a Central Double Duct High Velocity System which is capable of simultaneously cooling some areas of the building while heating other areas. This is of extreme importance particularly in spring and autumn, in a building which has extensive interior areas as well as extensive exterior areas.
The High Velocity System, together with all the Mixing Boxes are located in the basement with low velocity duct risers, on the outer perimeter of the building. This system ensures individual automatic temperature control for all the conditioned spaces.
With all the equipment and controls located in the basement, the system does not require any A.C. maintenance work within the building.
The structural scheme adapts itself to the different functional zones within the building. Each section has its own independent system. Most floors are 35cm deep, other than the transfer floor above the upper parking level, here the structural depth is 150cm. The suspended ceiling below the structural slabs varies, between 40 and 60cm, depending on the size of the ductwork.