Thursday September 01, 2022

Form of architecture decides shape of future: Nada Taryam

Form of architecture decides shape of future: Nada Taryam

Nada Taryam is Managing Director of Civil and Architectural Projects, BEEAH Group.

Muhammad Yusuf, Features Writer

Nada Taryam is Managing Director of Civil and Architectural Projects of BEEAH Group, one of the region’s leading sustainability pioneers. It is renowned for groundbreaking environmental innovations and smart solutions for future-ready cities.

BEEAH was founded in in Sharjah in 2007, as a company mainly concerned with environmental and waste management. It has moved on to invest in a comprehensive, full-circle strategy for the future, expanding into the fields of renewable energy, green mobility, transport, education, and technology.

Nada Taryam answers Rlixa’s questions — without wasting time

What aspects of BEEAH do you supervise?

I oversee the design, development and realisation of BEEAH Group’s architecture projects.  Along with our partners and projects team, I manage every step of architecture and civil projects for BEEAH, ensuring planning, execution, and closing to meet targets. Currently, my role applies to projects such as the BEEAH Headquarters, one of the most sustainable and smart buildings in the world.

As a trained architect, I was particularly involved in the design stages with the renowned Zaha Hadid Architects. I helped ensure that the design met building requirements, worked with environmental and site constraints, and ultimately, we accomplished the project’s objectives to the highest standards of quality.  My team also worked on ensuring that the building systems and infrastructure had minimal impact on the environment and that it was built to operate at LEED Platinum standards.

How many architectural projects have you overseen?

The BEEAH Headquarters has been a major project for me.  Many disciplines, from design to construction to technology, came together to realise this “Office of the Future” Headquarters. I am proud to have overseen and facilitated this over a period of seven years.  The BEEAH Headquarters is one of the last projects designed during Zaha Hadid’s lifetime and bringing it to life has been extremely rewarding.

Form of architecture decides shape of future: Nada Taryam Solar PV farm and battery packs meet much of power needs in BEEAH Headquarters.

We also worked with our technology partners Microsoft and Johnson Controls to integrate several AI use cases into the building to enable seamless interaction with the building, particularly in meeting rooms. My team and I oversee all operational aspects and enhancements in the building. Under the Group, I also oversee the design and construction of our recycling facilities located at BEEAH Recycling’s Waste Management Complex. We are currently working on a masterplan with mixed use projects as well.

What attracts you in architecture?

To me, architecture is one of the most tangible and functional art forms. The idea of form, function and emotion keeps me drawn to architecture.  I believe that buildings do not only have to meet practical purposes of shelter, but they can also move people in a certain way and enhance their experience within.

Your comments on architecture and sustainability. The impact of the construction industry on the environment is monumental. With that there is rising importance of architecture to be environmentally sustainable. It is important that sustainability becomes a foundational element in construction and architectural projects today. In the BEEAH Headquarters, for example, sustainability was a core requirement.  Natural light is a major component in the building, illuminating most of the spaces. We also utilised a solar PV farm and battery packs to meet a significant portion of our power needs.  I personally believe that sustainability enhanced with digitalisation must become standard considerations for architecture in the future.

Does/has BEEAH given building suggestions for projects other than its own?

Under BEEAH Digital, the digital transformation and future technologies business of BEEAH Group, we have a venture called EVOTEQ. EVOTEQ supported us with the integration of technologies into the BEEAH Headquarters and aims to create similar impact for its public and private sector clients.

Form of architecture decides shape of future: Nada Taryam BEEAH Headquarters is one of the last projects designed by renowned British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid.

Architecture both inspires reality and sustains future. Comment.We know of architectural monuments that can immediately bring up a mental picture. Iconic structures that are virtually synonymous with a city or country. Similarly, architecture almost serves as a gateway to the future. Today, architecture is evolving to become more sustainable, which is essential to meeting the needs of more people, the growing number of businesses and developing cities.  I look forward to how we can build this sustainable future through innovative architecture.

How does architecture improve the environment?

 By incorporating sustainability as a core design principle, architecture can have minimal impact on the environment.  At the same time, this principle can enhance the built environment that people need to live, work and play. Architecture can create positive impact on the environment, and this can be sustained well into the future.

What are the qualities women in architecture bring to a project?

Women are increasingly contributing to the UAE’s economy in various fields, and I am honoured to be among the women contributing to the architectural landscape. I believe that women in architecture bring qualities that push the limits of both design, functionality and sustainability.  I have seen that women introduce new perspectives and possibilities in the design process and are exemplary problem solvers during execution.

Your message for women architects and civil engineers, especially that Emirates Women’s Day was observed recently. My advice would be to seek out opportunities in your area of interest. It is important to feed your passions and find your voice, whether in design or engineering.  Take inspiration from women who have beat the odds to become leaders in their field. If you dream of something and can make a plan for it, you will find a way to achieve it, even if it has never been done before.

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