C.F. Møller’s award winning office complex for fashion group Bestsellers in Aarhus creates the impression of a town within a town. A mix of offices, shared facilities and outdoor spaces, it is surrounded by canals and lakes on all four sides. It also forms the entrance to a new, urban district on the waterfront in Aarhus, Denmark.
Sustainability is key here. Planned as a low energy building, the office complex uses seawater cooling and solar heating to achieve an energy consumption 50% lower than the minimum requirements stated in building regulations.
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C.F. Møller’s new-built office complex for fashion group Bestsellers in Aarhus has been awarded with one of the world’s finest architectural awards.
“It’s a clear winner for me, an amazing commercial space.”
John Drew, Principal at Pringle Brandon Perkins+Will summed up the jury’s conclusion to announce the Bestseller office complex, designed by C.F. Møller, as winner of the WAN Commercial Award 2015.
The jury’s brief was to find only one winner from a fine array of commercial projects from across the globe. After much discussion and debate the jury decision was unanimous in favour of the Bestseller Office Complex, as jury member Kent Jackson from Skidmore, Owings & Merrill states: “The spaces and the roof terraces are very impressive, a real standout winner”.
The sustainability was another aspect that impressed the judges. The office complex uses sea-water cooling and solar heating ensuring energy consumption 50% lower than the minimum requirements stated in the building regulations.
“The fact that the energy consumption is 50% less than code is another plus”, says Kent Jackson.
Sympathetic to the City
The complex is a mix of office, shared facilities and outdoor spaces, creating the impression of a town within a town. The complex, surrounded by canals and lakes on all four sides, also forms the entrance to the new, urban district on the waterfront in Aarhus, Denmark.
“This office building by C.F. Møller stands out from the others as a sophisticated response to its context. The strategy of breaking a large volume into linked smaller parts helps to integrate the building into the existing surroundings because the scale of the component parts is sympathetic to the old town nearby” explains Matt Yeoman from BuckleyGrayYeoman.
Bestseller’s new offices where completed in 2015, and received the Aarhus Municipality Architecture Award in the same year.
World Architecture News (WAN) launched in 2005 and is now the world's leading supplier of news to the global architectural community. The yearly WAN AWARDS celebrates the best in architectural design, as the largest award of its kind, attracting entries from all over the world with over 1500 outstanding projects in different categories this year.
In the final shortlist, the Bestseller complex was up against competitors such as the Novo Nordisk HQ by Henning Larsen architects, the Believe in Better Building by Arup and the Lanserhof Clinic Tegernsee by ingenhoven architects.
The interior program of C.F. Møller’s award winning office complex for fashion group Bestsellers in Aarhus includes 800 workplaces, plus showrooms, auditorium, video and film studios, a large canteen and shared facilities for fashion shows and conferences. Fittings from Danish company VOLA were used throughout to complete the meticulously chosen textures of stone, wood and metal.
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The office complex comprises a varied flotilla of buildings at different levels connected by a series of outdoor spaces, e.g. courtyards, terraces and roof gardens.
The mixture of office buildings and outdoor spaces creates the impression that this is a town within a town. The complex, surrounded by canals and lakes on all four sides, forms the entrance to the new, urban district on the waterfront in Aarhus, Denmark.
There will be about 800 workplaces here, plus showrooms, an auditorium, video and film studios, a large canteen and shared facilities for fashion shows and conferences. There is a three-storey underground car park with space for 450 cars and about 500 bicycle racks.
The façades are designed on two design principles: Reliefs in light natural stone frame deep window niches in the parallel north and south façades. By way of contrast, the east and west façades are simple, transparent glass façades framed with natural stone.
The office complex will use sea-water cooling and solar heating and is planned as a low energy class 2015 building, i.e. energy consumption will be 50% lower than the minimum requirements stated in the building regulations.
This is the new HQ office complex for Bestseller, an international family-owned fashion company with more than 20 well-known fashion brands. The building houses about 800 workplaces, plus showrooms, an auditorium, video and film studios, a large canteen and shared facilities for fashion shows and conferences. The complex resembles a varied flotilla of buildings at different levels, surrounded by canals and lakes on all four sides, forming the entrance to the new, urban district on the waterfront in Aarhus, Denmark.
The clear-cut and clean expression of the complex is achieved by proportioning the volumes and facades in such a way that they appear interesting from many angles, and highlight the gables of the individual buildings; and the use of a few and carefully selected materials with great texture and quality - natural stone, dark oak wood, in situ cast concrete, leather and frosted metal. All elevations are really based on two design principles: Reliefs of the light Sicilian limestone frame deep window niches in the parallel north and south façades. In contrast, the east and west façades are smooth, transparant glass façades framed with the natural stone. The same few materials are used everywhere throughout the building - here you can really talk about inside and outside forming a continuity - and in some places they are used in different ways e.g. as ceilings, furniture or sinks. The right texture and detail means that the interiors do not appear boring or sterile, as one might fear with such a simplified expression. On the contrary, it creates an atmosphere and character in the spaces that goes far beyond a standard office environment, and underscores Bestsellers image as a design-driving company.
The office complex will use sea-water cooling and solar heating and is planned as a low energy class 2015 building. A combination of natural and efficient mechanical ventilation, free cooling via sea-water heat exchange, full LED lighting, photovoltaics and a high-performance airtight and insulated envelope all contribute to keeping the total primary consumption for heating, cooling, lighting and mechanical below 52 kWh per square meter per year. But it is not only about energy savings - CF Møller also considered such things as giving priority to bicycle users, good indoor climate and excellent staff facilities to give the building a broader, socially sustainable profile.