Proyecto Roble is the new office of Van Helvoirt Groenprojecten, a landscaping firm in Berkel-Enschot, the Netherlands. Designed by Equipe Architecture and Urbanism, the office is a model for sustainability as well. The overall goal for the project was to make the building's inhabitants "Feel Good" - and that included everything from incorporating renewable energy to climate control, natural light and plenty of local landscaping. The impressive eco office includes solar panels, a green roof, sustainable materials and a beautiful therapeutic garden.
Landscape architecture firm Van Helvoirt Groenprojecten‘s striking home office is a barn-style volume with red slats on the exterior. Drawing upon passive design principles, the building was oriented and organized to manage the sun’s free energy and balance daylight with shading. The roof features both a photovoltaic system and a green roof, which is more high-tech than your average green roof. Urine from the building’s restrooms is collected and filtered through the rooftop vegetation, making this the first system of its kind as far as we know. In addition to processing the waste, the urine also acts as a fertilizer.
Inside, the building is finished with custom furniture and details, many of which were made with reclaimed materials. The goal was to reuse and repurpose wherever possible, and new materials had to have minimal impact. A centrally located clay stove provides heat for the building as well as domestic hot water. The stove is fueled with trimmings from the firm’s landscaping work. The office was completed in June 2012 and it has already won Equipe Architecture and Urbanism and Van Helvoirt Groenprojecten three Dutch awards – and it were just shortlisted as one of the top 7 Sustainable Buildings of the Year by WAN.
Images ©Rene de Wit