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Student Housing Tower, Aarhus, Denmark

Friday 30 Nov 2012

Beyond expectation

Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark
Arkitema Arkitects, Photo: Kontrafame 
Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark Student Housing Tower by Arkitema Architects in Aarhus, Denmark
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Arkitema designs building to exceed EU 2020 ambitions 

The student housing tower was awarded 1st prize in the EU bid tendered by the housing association Ringgaarden, DK. The project is a genuine zero-energy building which translates to an energy efficiency that far surpasses the present Danish Building Code and also the announced EU 2020 ambitions.

The documentation for zero energy consumption has been carried out with a mandatory Danish energy calculation programme - Be10. The building itself is a 12-storey structure, shaped by daylight and view analyses. The design has been modified and fitted to hold the maximum number of quality square-metres-for-living and simultaneously forming the basis for a rich social life. A compact building that is opened by 'the social zipper' that cuts through the south west facade of the building starting from the recreational bastion.

The tower project represents an evolution of the traditional youth / student apartment that has shared baths and kitchens. In the tower each of the 99 apartments have a private cooking area and private bath but with the addition that each apartment also supports its own energy unit, thus making it possible to monitor and to be individually accountable for energy consumption - a fact that is expected to have a positive influence on the overall energy consumption of the apartment tower.

The loss of shared social space in the shape of kitchens and bathing facilities is more than outweighed by the social space that is introduced on each floor and the big stairwell open space towards the south west. With easy access to bus routes and the proposed light railway and with 150 covered bicycle parking lots, public transportation and soft traffic has been favoured over fossil fuel driven transportation.

The student dwelling tower has been created in an integrated design process all the way from the competition stage through to the actual project finish. A process in which architects, engineers, energy consultants, fire consultants, and builders have cooperated a people focused design that meets both very strict economic and environmental demands.

The construction has been based on the passive house principles combined with a system that reuses the heat from bathing water and energy producing solar panels. The facades have been produced in a new (and newly patented) system in high performance concrete, Connovate. The conovate elements have been developed by Arkitema together with concrete producers and technical universities.

The elements excel in slimness, passive house compliance, less energy use in production and transportation and less area demand on the footprint of the building. The low energy windows are x-frame composite windows, developed by Arkitema in an elegant design that lets in a maximum of daylight. Arkitema was also in charge of implementing the solar panels on the south east facade where they function as both railing, noise guard, solar screen and energy producer. All primary materials of the student housing tower have been produced in Denmark.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Arkitema Architects

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