A new Foster + Partners-designed office building in Belval, Luxembourg has broken ground.
Dubbed ICÔNE, the 202,000-sf office complex has an interior reminiscent of an Escher painting, filled with light and greenery. The flexible layout encourages collaboration and addresses the need for safe working environments and the changes to the workplace that will emerge in the future.
“The project is designed to have open, flexible workspaces that respond to the emerging models of work today,” said Darron Haycock, Partner, Foster + Partners, in a release. “The atrium is a green light-filled space that is very much the social heart of the project, providing visual connectivity and a dynamic atmosphere for both work and play. Biophilia, the green landscaping, natural ventilation and visual connectivity all promoting collaboration and healthy wellbeing.”
The building was also designed to reference the industrial heritage of Belval and revitalize the area by making a positive contribution to the site and its surroundings. It is wrapped by an orthogonal facade and roof that emphasize the structural grid and give the building a unified industrial look. The façade is both structural and environmentally responsive, providing an integrated solution which allows for internal column-free office spaces as well as solar shading and maximized internal daylight.
The scheme releases to its neighboring buildings and addresses the different characteristics of the principal axes to the east and west. Entrances are articulated differently in response to the urban street and civic plaza while the building edge along Porte de France contains shops. Cafes and restaurants on the ground floor complement Place de l'Académie.
ICÔNE is arranged as two wings enclosing the central atrium. The atrium resolves the level changes between the street and the plaza though a series of stepped terraces that create an arrival sequence. The open circulation features communal terraces for informal meetings and break out spaces at higher levels overlooking the central volume. Glimpses of interior green spaces can be see-through a series of punched volumes that intersect the gridded structure.
The design, created in collaboration with Beiler Francois Fritsch, aims for a BREEAM Excellent rating and will be WELL Building Standard® certified.