NZS Headquarters and VIP Lounge
Nominated for the Mies van der Rohe Award 2017.
The NZS Headquarters and the VIP Lounge were built for the National Football Associaton of Slovenia in the culturally protected landscape park at Brdo pri Kranju, near the renaissance Brdo castle.
The goal of the design was to leave the protected historical park as intact as possible by means of designing the buildings as completely autonomous volumes.
The NZS Headquarters building duly respects the site of the building that stood in it's place before.
The new building is placed on location as an autonomous volume whose whiteness clearly draws the boundaries between the centuries old work of nature and the creation of the human hands.
An essential element of the design of the building volume is represented in capturing the views towards the surrounding landscape.
Both floor plans are U-shaped, pivoted in relation to one another in a way so that the ground floor opens towards the existing hay-rack and football fields, while the first floor directs the views towards the silhouette of Kamniško Savinjske Alps.
The centre of rotation is represented in a round glass atrium, dominated by three fruit trees. The atrium is also the main ambiental attraction for the visitors entering the building.
The NZS Headquarters building si designed as a kind of a nature observatory, since all the offices are placed on the outer perimeter of the building volume.
This way the users have as direct as possible contact with the surroundings via the fully glazed façade.
In contrast to the offices the common rooms and corridors are placed around the green curved atrium and have a direct view of the surrounding Alps from the first floor.
The façade membrane is inserted between the horizontal geometry of the concrete slabs and the emphasized aluminium verticals.
The latter are a clear reflection of the structural design, most clearly seen on the south wing facade which incorporates the shape of a three-meter high Vierendel carrier.
Structural axes that are reflected on the façade along with the locations of window openings correspond to the organization of offices.
Together they form a seemingly random composition of the façade cladding that mimics the rhythm of trunk verticals in the nearby forest.
For the VIP lounge and it's accompanying programs the image of the existing hippodrome with it's green mound became the leading motif for the design.
The complex series of programs of changing rooms, fitness, wellness, are designed below the level of the green mound.
The only visible building in the landscape is the white box of the VIP lounge that seems to float above it.
The VIP pavilion is designed as a transparent frame which frames the surrounding nature.
The nature moves seamlessly through the volume of the building. There is a continuity of landscape through architecture.
White concrete was used to connect the buildings to the green landscape by means of making a contrast.
On the other hand, the white concrete in winter makes the buildings disappear in the snow covered landscape.