A happy marriage between RAU Architects and sustainable clothing company Hessnaturresulted in the company’s lovely Mondrian-esque headquarters near Frankfurt. Made almost completely from recycled materials in line with Hessnatur’s uncompromising sustainability ethic, the building also boasts a ton of daylighting, colorful, a bank of wooden-framed windows that doubles as a display case, and a solid earthen wall that regulates the building’s interior temperature. Even though it was completed back in 2006, we still think this project deserves attention since it demonstrates that businesses committed to reducing their environmental impact can still enjoy widespread success.
Hessnatur selects their clothing materials very carefully to ensure that their businesses has a positive environmental and social impact. This same philosophy was applied to their office building materials. Only FSC-certified wood was used for the window framing and natural interior, as well as recycled brick and clay. The striking patchwork windows disguise a solid earthen wall that radiates heat gained throughout the day in the evening, and also manages the building’s acoustics and humidity.
The overall program consists of open boxes made of responsibly-sourced larch and glass stacked to form arched roof sections. This combined with colorful enamel glass panels ensures that the mixed-use office and shop can enjoy plenty of natural light during the day without excess heat generated by the sun. Every effort has been made to keep the 1200 square meter interior decor as natural as possible in keeping with the beautiful landscape that greets visitors at the door. We love Hess Natur and we love RAU – the people who also designed the world’s first energy-generating revolving door, so we can hardly think of a better design match than this.