The new Agristo headquarters is ready for the future

As with any architectural project, the client’s demand was the starting point here, which meant providing head office, green space and parking tower within the limited site. With Agristo’s baseline of “one family” it was a logical step for OYO architects to provide these three functions under one roof. The unique design form is an answer to the challenge of creating a new, advanced, dynamic workplace. “We wanted to redefine the traditional office building, based on the concepts of spaciousness, sustainability and ‘the new way of working’, to adapt to the ambition and values ​​of the company”, say the designers.

To fit the three functions into one structure while maximizing space for development, OYO abandoned the conventional square/rectangular fit. The design team created an organic form to make the most of the allotted lot and manipulated the volumetry to provide all employees with natural light throughout the day.

Due to the limited area and the presence of the surrounding buildings, it was decided to provide parking at the base of the building, on the ground floor and an underground level. This solution ensures a limited spatial impact and maintains a maximum view of the surroundings for the office space above. The plinth follows the contours of the surrounding buildings and the ground boundary, which creates a clear circulation around the building and avoids residual space. By turning the volume 90 degrees in relation to the plinth, it is oriented optimally in relation to the sun. This creates maximum natural light throughout the building. This placement also creates more space between the different buildings. Furthermore, the parking plinth is provided with an open facade with vegetation, so that natural ventilation is possible in conjunction with extra high-quality green space and terraces.

Future-proofed concept

Maximum use of flexibility has been made in the design. Parking spaces are currently made available in the plinth on levels -1 and 0. In the long term – in the future there will probably be fewer company cars on the road – the parking on the ground level can provide space for additional office space. In this way, the building can grow with the company’s needs.

There is also a wide range of workplaces for different purposes. In addition, the cafeteria can function as a workplace individually or in groups, the atrium zone can be used for events and so on.

Green office

Agristo’s requirement for a green area lifted OYO architects to a higher level. “Investing in green is investing in the well-being of employees. For that reason, we have decided to make green spaces an important and deliberate feature of the building itself,” said OYO. Terraces on all levels of the building give workers equal and easy access to the outdoors, bringing everyone closer to nature.

Integrated sustainable

Agristo’s original request was to develop a BEN building (EPB E40). As a result, a sustainable approach has already been applied in the design phase. The ventilation of the parking plinth occurs naturally through the open facade, the cantilevered floor slabs act as a cover against overheating, the office volume is compact in relation to the facade,…

As an energy concept, the focus is on maximum recycling. As a result, it was decided to use residual heat from production by using a ‘hot water smart grid’. In addition, the cooling will take place by extracting cooling from the underfloor heating in the freezers. In this way, the new office enters into synergy with the factory building. “This way of thinking illustrates how adaptive design and sustainable practices are woven into every aspect of design. This is one of the reasons why the building receives a BREEAM EXCELLENT certificate”, notes OYO architects.

A sustainable system for the air conditioning system was also proposed, using concrete core activation in the ceiling, a system that works at a low temperature and can therefore be easily combined with renewable energy such as the use of residual heat. To limit the need for cooling, night cooling is used. In addition, provision is made for the reuse of rainwater for all toilets and service taps. The collected rainwater from the flat roofs is transferred to the existing buffer tank for reuse in production. The flat roof of the office volume will be equipped with solar panels to limit energy consumption.

Finally, Agristo wants to encourage its employees to come to work by bicycle, so a bicycle shed with charging stations for electric bicycles and showers for the employees will be provided. In addition, thirty electric charging points for cars will be made available.

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