Pushed to breaking point

Tuesday 27 Jul 2010

MVRDV unveils creative design for a low energy building in Paris

Dutch architects MVRDV and French developer ICADE Promotion have partnered on the design of a €35m energy efficient office building at ZAC Gare de Rungis in the 13th arrondissement of Paris. The 19,000 sq m building, which is designed to be totally flexible to accommodate one or multiple tenants, will be one of the first low energy buildings realised in France; with low energy consumption and an energy production of approximately 200,000 kWh per year.

Dubbed the Pushed Slab building, for the shape the building takes when the slab is 'pushed' until it breaks then twisted and pushed to the south, the building is designed with two different faces to address two completely different urban grids. On the north side, the building exhibits a calm demeanor in dialogue with the dense urban fabric of the north side of Paris. On the south side, the building is more dynamic. When the slab is pushed, it causes the building to break, creating an opening that frames a view of an historic building. This pushing action also distorts the floors, animating the building’s form and creating opportunities for terraces that can be accessed from work areas and from the external staircases located off the plaza.

The building is wrapped in a skin of certified wood and ribbon windows that are strategically angled to bring natural light into the interior spaces. Energy savings will be achieved through the use of natural ventilation, 1500 sq m solar panels on the roof, a grey water system, and exterior insulation with a projected energy consumption of 49 kWh per sq m per year.

According to the Jerome Coumet, the mayor of the arrondissement, the project is part of 'the first Eco-quarter in Paris'. Construction is expected to commence in 2011.

Sharon McHugh

Key Facts:

MVRDV Pushed Slab Paris

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