OPW – DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND FOOD | 2007
OPW – DEPARTAMENT ROLNICTWA I ŻYWNOŚCI
design: Reddy Architecture
scope of work: design development, 3D render
zakres prac: projekt koncepcyjny, wizualizacje
Competition for office building to accommodate the decentralised government office in portlaoise, co. Laois, for the department of agriculture & foods for 900 staff with an area of 17500 sqm
The design intent is to integrate the building with the landscaping by reducing the overall massing by ‘camouflaging’ a large mass of the building within the actual site finish yet maintaining the required internal spaces.
Accentuate the narrower office wings by separating them and raising them impressively out of the ‘ground’ to maintain the landmark status of the building.
The massing of the building has been broken up into a wide, low central ground / part first floor block which is integrated into the landscape by means of mounding the ground and grass up and over it. This form will house the main public and communal office functions such as the conference suite, the training rooms and the canteen, with the large required storage facility to the back (south of the building.)
The general office areas will be housed in 3 blocks which cut into this ‘grass mound’ form and rise above it forming 3 distinct building ‘wings’ or ‘fingers.’ The office fingers are linked by glazed walkways which facilitate horizontal and vertical circulation through the building. A steel and timber slatted structure covers the glazed walkways offering shade to these elements and the western glazed facade of the ground floor block. Whilst defining the circulation areas within the building, this ‘spine’ also defines both the main and staff entrance at either end projection. Its height and contrasting material finish to the rest of the building create a dramatic impact on entering the site and clearly define the focal point of entry to the building. Each of the office blocks or ‘fingers’ run lengthways from west to east in order to facilitate optimum north-south facing office aspects, and allowing the northern elevations to be extensively glazed. The south facing facades of the office block ‘fingers’ are designed to offer improved solar performance and minimized heat gains by the inclusion of a percentage of insulated panels and integral brise soleil along the full length of the façade at each floor level. The grassed form has no exposed south face and thus is protected to a large degree from solar gain discomfort.