The former gas central of ARBED was converted into an administration building and extended by a new building with a workshop, studios, storage rooms and an underground car park. The challenge of this project, which was created on the former steel industrial site “Domaine Schlassgoart” in Esch-sur-Alzette, was to realise an architecture that combines aspects of cultural heritage and innovation in equal measure.
In line with the group’s philosophy, the 7,900 m2 building was designed according to the environmental and quality criteria of the ABA energy class and meets the criteria of the Breeam and HQE environmental certifications. As a responsible company and energy producer, Enovos has introduced an energy management system according to ISO 5001. The old Enovos International building and the new building are connected by a bright and welcoming corridor that houses a Coffee-Lounge. In addition, solar panels with a capacity of 30 kWp have been installed on the roof.
The new working environment encourages communication and collaboration between colleagues. It is based on the principle of four zones: workplace, exchange, withdrawal and break. These zones not only offer modular workspaces, but also respond to different needs in order to optimise performance and well-being. Views towards the landscape are provided on all floors, allowing employees to escape from the office visually. The visual concept is another special feature of the new Enovos headquarters. It is inspired by the five key elements of air, water, renewable energy, sun and heat. Each floor symbolizes one element.
The façade is punctuated by horizontal slats of aluminium bronze that structure the surface and echo in colour the bricks of the cooling tower of the former Arbed factory. The new building rests on a base of anthracite concrete which links the past and the present. The former pump room has been converted into an auditorium. The former turbine workshop was refurbished about 10 years ago and houses part of the administration. Its brick facade is a stimulating counterpoint to the contemporary facade of the new building.
The new head office owes its share of expression to innovation and the intelligent use of natural resources. New techniques were included in the construction planning from the very beginning of the project.
Inside, the dominant impression is one of openness. The atrium, with its generous proportions, is dominated by light colours and the interior design invites you to enjoy the space. On one side, two large glass walls open up the perspectives to the surroundings and on the other side, one is drawn to the offices and conference rooms. Thus, the building’s entrance reflects two important elements for the company: transparency and communication. Great attention is paid to the comfort of the employees. One enters the open spaces through a meeting area, encouraging exchanges between colleagues. Small meeting rooms are set up between the offices, allowing spontaneous meetings. Because they are closed by only three walls, they allow isolation from other colleagues, without excluding them completely. The corridors are also furnished with sofas and armchairs inviting convivial exchange between colleagues. This approach of exchange and transparency is also applied on the director’s floor, where the directors’ offices are separated by only one glass wall. This concept is applied to the whole building, with the exception of some meeting rooms.