Two departments that are currently located in different areas of the city of Leeuwarden will be combined in one new office building. UPC wants to offer its staff a qualitatively better work place, but it also has the advantage of being able to share provisions and expand the synergy between the two departments. The new location will be easier to reach by car and public transport. The Harlingertrekvaart location offers space and a good view. A park environment will eventually be formed by way of a planned green area at the north side of the building. UPC staff members have priority in this building. A healthy climate inside, intelligent and flexible use of space and the availability of relaxation and concentration areas ensure that people can actually and figuratively be re-charged with energy again. This is due to the fact that quality is in the outside of the building, but even more so in the building’s internal functions. The points of departure in the design process were the actual requirements of end users, the client and their environments.
Light The building has large open work floors which can be set up in many different ways. Two atria in the centre supply adequate daylight and a good view, as do the high windows and ceilings surrounding the work places. At the side of the green area, up to four levels can be built and on the canal side up to six. This offers the possibility for a roof terrace on the north side of the building.
Connection The parking garage below the building is partly deepened in order to allow for a direct connection with outside, specifically by the entrance and the restaurant, without having to cover an entire floor. Therefore on the water side the building is slightly raised to offer space for traffic going towards the parking garage. On the park side, the building is lowered slightly to make a connection with the green area. Combined with the two atria, the building has a characteristic and recognisable aura because of this.
Conserving energy The compact form of the building and the two atria inside can reduce the total surface of sun-exposed façade surface area. In addition, by using intelligent shading devices which allow in adequate daylight but block the heat of direct sunlight, less cooling is required. Heating the building by means of geothermal energy and cooling the building with water from the Harlingertrekvaart also offer considerable energy conservation in a simple way. By using PV cells on the roof, all of these sustainable and energy conserving techniques have resulted in the building being awarded a BREEAM-NL Excellent certificate.