Today the German Sustainable Building Council (DNGB) will award UNStudio's Center for Virtual Engineering (ZVE) their gold certification for sustainable building at its official opening. Located on the Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft and Organization IAO campus in Stuttgart, the high-performance structure features a space-saving circular and rectangular design and operable bands of windows that together form a sawtooth facade.
An experiment in constructing offices to promote communication, experimentation and creativity, ZVE is comprised of a main curved structure with rows of horizontal windows that open to permit natural ventilation and then extends into a more traditional rectangular space. This alternative to the grid is not only ascetically-pleasing, but also allows for a remarkably low facade to volume ratio of just 32%. Bubble deck ceilings mitigate the need for structural columns, and the lintel-free ceilings allow natural light to penetrate deep into the building.
Taking their commitment to sustainability (and attainability) one step further, UN Studio used low-maintenance, separable and recyclable materials for ZVE’s skeleton, interior and facade construction. This combined with the building’s super efficient footprint and compact building volume, along with a variety of energy-saving fixtures, all culminate in an exciting and progressive design that has earned the recognition that it is receiving from DNGB today!