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Federation of Korean Industries (FKI)

Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

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dmadsen, hanley wood, llc

Project Name

Federation of Korean Industries (FKI)

Project Status


Year Completed



Federation of Korean Industries


  • Thornton Tomasetti
  • Environmental Systems Design
  • Chang-Jo Architects



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Project Description


Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG) has announced the public opening of the new head offices for the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI).

"FKI Headquarters represents a new exterior wall typology that both integrates significant quantities of photo voltaic panels into the exterior wall and slopes the vision glass at an angle that generates self-shading and allowing less reflective glass to be used. The result is a unique folded exterior texture that is both purposeful and distinctive" says Adrian Smith.

The 50-story, 240-meter tower features an innovative exterior wall, designed specifically for the project. The building’s unique skin will help reduce the internal heating and cooling loads and collect energy through photovoltaic panels that are integrated into the spandrel areas of the southwest and northwest facades. By angling the spandrel panels 30 degrees upward toward the sun, the design is able to maximize the amount of energy collected, generating enough power to help maintain the electrical systems throughout the tower core and the office spaces.

Just below the spandrel panels, the vision panels are angled 15 degrees downward toward the ground, minimizing the amount of direct sun radiation and glare. Together, the alternating spandrel and vision panels create a dynamically rippled façade that is both environmentally progressive and visually striking, giving the tower a unique architectural presence on the skyline.

The interior of the building takes advantage of the floor to ceiling windows of the exterior wall, offering an abundance of natural light to office spaces and corridors as well as extensive views of neighboring Yeoido Park, the Han River and the surrounding city of Seoul.

The completed tower includes several indoor garden/atrium spaces that enhance the workplace environment with natural elements of wood, bamboo and other native plants. The roof top atrium space features more custom photovoltaic panels.

“The ideal angle of the PV panel placement on the roof was studied in detail,” says Gordon Gill, “In a relatively unconfined space, PVs would normally be angled upward at 30 degrees but within the limited area of the roof, we determined that a 10-degree angle allowed for more panels to be installed closer together, minimizing the effect of the panels casting shadows on each other and ultimately producing more solar energy for the building.”

AS+GG Partner Robert Forest adds, “The tower features one of the most efficient solar electric facades in the world in a cost effective manner, proactively expanding Korea's goal of advancing renewable energy generation in buildings.”

The sculptural podium piece is located on central Yeoi-Dae-Ro Avenue, further promoting the tower’s public identity. The podium amenities, available for public use include a banquet hall, central restaurant and conference center. The podium will be available for international conferences with a large first floor banquet hall and smaller conference rooms of various sizes located on the second and third floors. The multi-purpose nature of the podium is another way that the FKI building will become a new city centerpiece for Seoul.

AS+GG collaborated with the engineering firms Thornton Tomasetti and Environmental Systems Design, as well as the local firm Chang-Jo Architects, on the project.

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