Education Executive Agency & Tax Offices
A greener approach to tall buildings
The building accommodates 2,500 workstations and parking facilities for 1,500 bicycles and 675 cars in an underground garage. It is surrounded by a large public city garden with a multipurpose pavilion.
The building’s aerodynamic form along with the addition of the lower plinth ensures minimal wind disruption to the local microclimate and birdlife in the historic woodland. Sustainability steered the design of the facade. Fin-shaped elements wrap the building, integrating sun shading and wind and daylight control.
On the lower levels, shared public functions promote exchange and interaction between employees, clients and visitors.
The building’s design reflects and accommodates the separate identities of both user groups. For security reasons, the public functions are separated from the escalators leading to the office and operational floors.
A healthy workspace
Abundant natural daylight, access to fresh air and adjustable heating and ventilation contribute to the comfort of individual workspaces throughout the building.
A logistics loop through the building connects all facilities from the underground car park through to the restaurant and gym on the ground floor up to the business centre and terrace on the first floor.
The City Garden
The city garden combines a natural,ecological environment with the liveliness of an urban public space. It connects with the specific ecology of the adjacent forest and provides food and shelter for birds and insects.
The garden pavilion reflects the design of the main building, yet presents a more extroverted character. A gently sloping exterior staircase accesses rooftop terrace which forms an extension of the gardens.
The underground car park
Three open skylights punctuate the underground car park. These spatial elements connect the cark park to the city garden, additionally serving as wayfinding elements and emergency staircases.
Dutch artist Giny Vos designed a connecting light installation between the main entrance and access to the underground car park. Possibility Plant appears as a black box on landscape level but reveals its coded data at the entrance to the car park.
“The office spaces are designed in such a way that they do not create simple linear corridors leading to dead ends, but instead each corridor has a route which introduces a kind of landscape into the building. You can take endless walks through the building, where there is a great deal of transparency, also towards the surrounding landscape.”
Ben van Berkel
Work & Campus
Attainable WorkplaceThe project is one of Europe’s most sustainable large new office buildings. The RGD brief prescribed a future-proof building that couples flexibility and sustainability with a modest aesthetic. Architecturally, the response strives for an holistic understanding of the concept of sustainability, including energy and material consumption, as well as social and environmental factors. Thus the sustainability manifests itself in reduced energy consumption (EPC 0.74) as well as significantly reduced material consumption. Read about our ongoing explorations of this theme in the Work & Campus workfield.
Work & Campus
The Work & Campus workfield examines affinities within new ways of working and learning, and how these may affect the office and campus models of the future. Our multidisciplinary teams investigate behavioural patterns and trends at the intersection of education and employment, including accelerated learning and production, emotional economy, distance learning services and examine how technology can be implemented in a balanced way. These tendencies are explored with a focus on their effect across scales – from the individual, to the group, to the community – with a view to developing relevant, impactful new design concepts that enhance working, learning and productivity.Read more
Singapore University of Technology and Design
Columbia Business School
United States, 2009
Concept and Design
- Merging Identities
- A Healthy Interior Climate
Merging IdentitiesHousing two different government agencies, the building thus provides two separate yet connected office wings. They are linked by a continuous loop that incorporates all the communal facilities, which simultaneously serve as informal meeting points. Elevators are located at the intersection of the loop.
SustainabilityInnovation, creativity and sustainability are interconnected in this project. The facade fins regulate wind and incoming daylight, and also block excess heat thus reducing the requirement for cooling.
The building’s aerodynamic design responds to down gusts of wind by redirecting them over the woods, thus preventing soil dehydration and avoiding root damage to the trees.