Two Middle Eastern media companies have commissioned New York-based architecture firm REX to design a retractable facade for their twin towers.

Inspired by the intricate latticework of traditional Arabic windows known as mashrabiya, REX has drawn up plans for an arrangement of flower-shaped sunshades to cover the building's eastern and western glass exteriors.

Measuring nearly 15 meters in diameter, these sunshades have been designed to “bloom” like flowers, quickly covering the fa├žade to protect the buildings from the sun as it moves across the sky.

When the sun is not an issue, the sunshades retract  and the tower’s exterior forms a jumbo television screen, used to broadcast the companies’ media content in real-time.

Inside, the media headquarters include space for offices, as well as common areas such as cafeterias and theatres. Studios, which require permanent blackout, are tucked in the basement levels.

Courtesy Arch Daily