RAU Architects convert existing building into sustainable office for World Wildlife Fund
The Dutch branch of the World Wildlife Fund for nature moves into its new premises. A former agricultural laboratory has been turned int an energy-efficient building. It is self-sufficient and produces no CO2 at all.
More than 1 in 18 of the Dutch population actively support the work of the WWF to protect nature in all its aspects. Part of this work is to deliver actual proof that it is possible - even by simple means - to realise an energy- and nature- saving world.
Nature reserve Schoonoord bordering on the Driebergseweg (Zeist), was the location of a laboratory dating from 1954. A ‘frozen’ building: austere, impersonal and grim. A decision was made to ‘reanimate’ it: to maintain the frame of the building, to reuse the rubble and to add a warm, pulsating heart in the middle. While simultaneously returning the grounds to nature.
In the moisture-balancing mud ceilings, continuous circulation through little glass tubes takes care of the spreading of human and mechanical warmth, and – even more importantly – of cooling. Through horizontal wooden blinds, a maximum of useful light enters. All materials are screened for environment friendliness as well as child labour. And of course space is made for wildlife: ‘bird-friendly roofing tiles’ and ‘bat basements’.