he Kuala Lumpur International Financial District (KLIFD) site is uniquely situated at the southern gateway to the City Center and adjacent to the Golden Triangle, which serves as the city's commercial, shopping and entertainment hub. It follows that this privileged site is an ideal location for Asia's first Islamic finance center, and is a deserving destination for the world-class institutions of Malaysia's financial system.
At the same time, the master plan must ensure an efficient, safe and sustainable living and working environment for its occupants. A successful solution, then, must simultaneously account for an identifiable "signature" as well as an effective and practical resolution of complex functional requirements.
Machado Silvetti's project attempts to resolve the problems typically associated with urban development—congestion, inhospitable pedestrian environments and compromised security—with an innovative and comprehensive solution that becomes the signature for the project. Our approach assumes that the functions that occur most efficiently at the city level, such as parking and through traffic, remain at the city level. A new undulating, elevated landscape is then built over the parking and retail levels, supporting a park-like setting above for easy and unencumbered pedestrian movement and leisure. Gracious and serene green spaces and courtyards offer a distinctive and sustainable identity for surrounding buildings, enhancing the day and night-time life of the KLIFD community and offering memorable views to ensure real estate values. This new elevated ground plane allows for slower, quieter access to specific KLIFD destinations in a safe and efficient manner, contributing to the quality of the pedestrian experience.
The creation of a raised landscape also allows for both the unification of the north and south portions of the KLIFD site, currently bifurcated by the Jalan Kampung Pandan, via a land bridge, as well as seamless integration with the existing city at its edges. This contiguous ground provides direct physical and visual connections to the entire KLIFD community, while helping to minimize the noise and visual congestion of the adjacent highway.
By identifying key locations on the KLIFD site, we propose "hills" or high points where the best views are afforded, and which may begin to create identifiable landmarks within the site itself. The hills of the public green space serve to anchor iconic buildings on site, as well as organize the distinct neighborhoods that are established within the district. Each neighborhood consists of a cluster of buildings grouped around a neighborhood plaza that offers a distinct identity, character and sense of place. Commercial spaces, restaurants, offices and services are integrated within to offer the appropriate amenities and help establish balanced and self-sustaining neighborhoods.
Machado Silvetti's strategy creates an unprecedented and indelible identity for the KLIFD site. The introduction of a new and varied elevated topography simultaneously accommodates the everyday mechanisms of the urban environment while creating a platform for a successful, efficient and pedestrian-oriented landscape above. The resulting undulating landscape also provides memorable and dramatic views to the surrounding city, and melds seamlessly into the lush and varied Kuala Lumpur topography.