Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects won a competition yesterday to design the new Brussels headquarters for Solvay, a global materials and chemical company. The Danish firm, who worked with Modulo Architects and VK Engineers, was chosen over other European teams including OMA, Valode & Pistre, Wilmotte & Associés, and Henning Larsen Architects.
Located on Solvay's rolling 22-hectare campus, the new headquarters will be a single building that aims to reflect the company's recent shift to a more open, sustainable culture.
Scroll down for a first glimpse at the winning proposal.
The new design emphasizes sustainability, resiliency, and openness. People will be welcomed to the building by The Esplanade, which the architecture team calls an “urban carpet” that will feature planters with benches, trees, and small reflective pools. The green roof will include skylights, large sunken gardens, and a geometric garden that will offer unobstructed views of the surrounding site.
The existing park on the west side of the entrance will be converted into a dedicated forest and reintroduce the 18th-century-old water stream connected to Brussels' Senne River. An outdoor amphitheater and a new restaurant will connect to the building.
Inside, the lobby will next to a new café and the Solvay Experience Centre. The first two floors will accommodate labs and workshops, while the upper four floors will be designated office space.
In between, the Meeting Centre will allow employees to gather, interact, and relax as they enjoy 360-degree views of the surrounding green campus. Informal workspaces will be provided throughout the building, such as the large social staircase lining the atrium.
“In the earliest stages, it became clear that one compact building with one common entrance into a sweeping atrium would allow everyone who passes through the headquarters to share the same unique experience of the building, and create a strong sense of belonging,” said Tiago Pereira, a Partner at Schmidt Hammer Lassen, in a statement.
"Over the past six years, Solvay has gone through one of the most profound business transformations in its 155-year history. This project embodies the start of a new era for the group's long-term growth,” says Solvay CEO Jean-Pierre Clamadieu.
The new headquarters, which is working to achieve BREEAM Excellent certification, will be carbon neutral and use geothermal energy, solar cells, and natural ventilation.
Lead Architect: Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects
Local Architect: Modulo Architects
Lead Engineer: VK Engineers
Landscape Architect: Ontwerpbureau Pauwels
MEP: Istema NV
Explosion Prevention: Abesco CVBA
Building Area: 42,000 m2
Competition 2018, First prize in an international competition
Find more project images in the gallery below.
Comment as :