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Kumport, KG Mimarlık, Photo: Büşra Yeltekin

Everything on Board: Company Headquarters in Istanbul by KG Mimarlik

The grounds of the Kumport freight forwarding business, which cover around 126,000 m², open to the south towards the sea. This area, characterized by countless shipping containers, needs an imposing headquarters building that stands out among all the bustle, but integrates into it as well.

The architects from KG Mimarlik conceived the headquarters as an allegorical duo that resembles two stranded freight ships: two nearly parallel, rectangular structures positioned slightly offset to each other. Located at the northern edge of the grounds, the two buildings face the sea with their south-facing transverse façades. Their length compensates for their height, which does not exceed 10.5 metres. With this height as a starting point, the architects developed a grid that serves to organize the buildings. They divided the volume into 3.5-metre-high boxes. At the ends of each tract, these stick out to various extents; they look a bit like shifted containers. All the faces are completely in black and consist of glass and steel. The horizontal beams accentuate the storeys, while vertical steel frames divide the ceiling-high glazing.

The structures are accessed from the north, where the two volumes are spanned by an intermediate space that becomes a large entrance hall. This takes up the entire height of the buildings, is flooded with light thanks to the glazing, and offers direct views of the sea. The adjacent tracts to either side are connected by several bridges, and their internal structure is clear. They are home to the usual spatial program comprising open-plan offices, administrative areas, meeting rooms, technical rooms and access zones. KG Mimarlik have allocated these functions to the individual boxes and arranged them within the two tracts. A sleek design with a rough, industrial character completes the headquarters. All the installations are exposed. The colour scheme follows the example set by the dark façades; nonetheless, it appears bright and welcoming: there are grey floors, surfaces in exposed concrete and wood as well as details such as vertical mooring ropes.

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