Nordic Light Offices 3rd Phase Competition
Location: EU, Hungary, 1113 Budapest, Véső utca 7.
Client: Skanska Magyarország Ingatlan Kft.
Scale: 13.000 GLA m2
Leading designers: LAB5 architects | Linda Erdélyi, András Dobos, Balázs Korényi, Virág Anna Gáspár
Designers: Zsófia Ferenczi, Bogáta Kendi, László Monori, Diána Németh
Competition: Honourable Mention Award
Developed by Skanska at Budapest, continuation of the first two phases of Nordic Light office buildings. We were aiming for a concept that based on the story of „Nordic Light”, but shades it’s appearance, and becomes a friendlier architectural feature in the residential streets.
Located close to the city centre, right in the so called „Váci út” corridor of new generation office buildings, the plot provides perfect opportunity for continuation of Skanska newest investment. The earlier two phases recently finished, are facing the main avenue with their façade. This third building is joined to the second phase, standing on the corner of two subordinated streets, still enough wide for an office building.
While the existing developments stand on the main allée, we aim to design their little brother, looking to the side streets, so it would be more modest, and its details are adapted to the smaller scale of urban environment. Roof is shaped as a reflection of neighbourhood district. This new building continues the architectural language of the freshly handed over ones, but speaks more friendly, and despite its façade using simple materials, it’s generous in its interior spaces.
The Váci út buildings are under the concept of “Nordic Light”, this continuation is imagined as an “Iceberg”, that totally reflects the world of the existing phases, but it is already melting on its floor level, to be more friendly for arriving people, and upper floors can be floating, to feel more easy for citizens of neighbourhood.
The proposal consists of basement, ground, general, and penthouse floors.
The invitation of tender asks for a building of two basement floors, however this way the necessary number of parking lots barely can’t be reach. The -1 floor provides opportunity for LEED compatible bicycle storage and changing rooms. All floors leave a later chance for joining the parking levels to the existing office building, despite the differences of floor levels. The grid of pillars determines the final contour of the building and the location of the two cores.
The ground floor organised generously to provide a flexible, big space. Creates an elegant first impression for the arriving guests, and surfaces for the open program of lobbies, lounges, waiting areas, coffee, and restaurant. The two cores and the two retails are solid volumes separated by walls, meanwhile all the earlier mentioned functions are visually attached to each other, some of them are in the same space, some divided by glass walls, some separated by other loose division elements. The ground floor level geometry is inspired by the flow of people arriving both from the street, and both from Váci road, on several possible paths, linking the existing gardens together. The layout is very open, the perimeter walls are zigzagging and made of fully glass, and the lines of the garden and the interior walls are continuation of each other. While the façade is mainly using the effect of the exiting phases, the interior and the garden are dressed up with playful colours, giving a cosy and elegant atmosphere both for the interior and the courtyard.
The upper general floors are optimized around the two cores, to have least possible “dark areas”. The two lobbies and subordinated functions are groped where the volume gets deep. Other areas the façade line is shifted toward the interior to reduce the shaded areas and joining the volume to the neighbouring existing building, showing open façade toward its windows.
Differences in floor levels between proposed and existing office buildings
There is an option, one of the emergency staircases can be put next to the existing building, and it can be designed in a way, that the two buildings later can be opened together, so one tenant can lease areas in two separate building, in the meanwhile link its premises by solving the height difference with stairs standing in the interior.
Being a smaller brother of the existing two phases, this new façade uses the white surface of them, but can be realised without using expensive additional elements of curtain wall. The playful pattern of the new windows and some little transition of light colours create a friendly atmosphere. The limitation of the new district regulations are too strict to use the surface of the plot, so the use of an attic roof can be more efficient. Turning this hardness into advantage, the attic space can be used up as a sunny loft area using skylights and huge roof windows. Corners of every floor is opened up by corner-windows, so the view from the interior would be tremendous. The perimeter wall of the general floors is put between the boundary of the plot, and the limitation of regulations in order to maximize GLA. The ground floor wall is fully made of glass, to link the street, the interior, and the courtyard to each other, and provide both visibility from the street and from the interior.