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snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

snøhetta has completed a timber office building for ASI reisen, an international trekking and adventure travel company. located in natters, just south of innsbruck, austria, the four-story building is surrounded by a lush exterior. this ‘green curtain’ is made up of climbing plants that grow on a suspended metal frame, ensuring that the structure blends harmoniously into its verdant forest surroundings. composed of 17 different warm weather and evergreen species growing in big planters, this curtain also serves as a glare shield and for shading the generous glass surfaces.

snøhetta ASI reisen
all images © christian flatscher | video © stefan krösbacher

 

 

when developing its new head office, ASI reisen wanted its th space to reflect its working culture and commitment to offering sustainable trekking experiences for travelers around the world. consequently, the design concept was developed together with the firm’s employees and the team from snøhetta. internally, an open office concept offers several solutions that will enable the long-term low environmental footprint of the office.

snøhetta ASI reisen

 

 

‘with its resource-saving timber construction and sophisticated sustainable energy concept, the new ASI headquarters marks an inspiration for responsibly constructing our homes and office spaces for the future,’ says patrick lüth, managing director of snøhetta’s studio in innsbruck. ‘at the same time, the new office space offers a pleasant and modern working atmosphere for its employees.’

snøhetta ASI reisen

 

 

the timber structure combines timber frame construction with solid wooden elements to optimize material use and allow for the greatest amount of open floor plans. in addition to the open office concept and sustainable construction methods, the building features an optimized and sustainable energy concept that is based on a combination of high-tech and low-tech solutions.

snøhetta ASI reisen

 

 

the 118 climbing plants change the appearance of the façade throughout the year and also adapt to seasonal thermal insulation needs. the microclimate created by this green buffer zone reduces the energy required for cooling the building. in addition, the metal frame that supports the climbing plants doubles as an accessible balcony for staff.

snøhetta ASI reisen

 

 

for the facade, a traditional japanese method of wood preservation was used, known as yakisugi. slightly charred and thus carbonized, the façade is both waterproof and durable without the need for further painting, while also protecting against insects. the basement and the building core are made of reinforced concrete. wood was also used for the mullion-transom-façade, the windows, floors and acoustic panels.

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

 

 

rainwater from the roof is collected in an underground cistern and feeds the automatic irrigation system for the plants on the façade and the garden. together with the 1,215 new plants in the open space consisting of 73 local species, the green façade also contributes to local biodiversity.

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

 

 

the open-plan office is designed for ASI reisen’s 65 employees, but can be flexibly adapted to future needs if required. galleries create a large, open, and flexible office space, including a variety of individual workplaces as well as communal areas. glass surfaces offer panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and forests, while a large staircase and a double-height foyer create a welcoming space for visitors. dubbed ‘base camp’ by employees, the lobby is a point of entry where the history of the company is presented on large wall panels.

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

 

 

the use of light timber as the main material choice ensures a bright and welcoming atmosphere. meanwhile, employee comfort is prioritized through the inclusion of communal spaces such as meeting niches and rooms, a relaxation room, a cafeteria, showers and changing rooms. shelves abundant with plants provide a visually pleasing subdivision of the different working zones and offer storage space as well as informal workspaces for reading and writing. a bridge connects the new office with an existing building that includes meeting and relaxation rooms.

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

 

 

to achieve optimal results, the energy concept was tested and adapted using a thermal-dynamic building simulation. a reversible air-water heat pump system (40 kW) heats and cools the building via underfloor heating or cooling. sensors measuring room temperature, humidity, CO2 and wind, control the natural ventilation using thermal lift and wind pressure conditions to circulate fresh air through the building. the constantly monitored room climate then regulates how wide and how long the ventilation flaps are open. the roof is covered with photovoltaic panels, and the electricity generated partly covers the power consumption of the building.

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

snohetta-ASI-reisen-timber-office-austria-designboom-1800b

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

snøhetta wraps ASI reisen's timber office building in austria with a 'green curtain'

 

 

project info:

 

name: ASI reisen headquarters
location: natters near innsbruck, tirol, austria
architecture, interior design, landscape architecture: snøhetta
client: ASI reisen
completed: 2019
structural engineers: tragwerkspartner, innsbruck
HVAC, building simulation: alpsolar klimadesign; innsbruck
site area: 2,027 sqm
built-up area: 347 sqm
gross floor area: 1,548 sqm
floor area: 1,389 sqm
building volume: 5,469 m3

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