DnB Nor Headquarters

DnB Nor Headquarters

Oslo, Norway
Project Year

DnB Nor Headquarters

MVRDV as Architects

The development of a new headquarter cluster in the Bjørvika Barcode master plan is a strategic operation from an organizational point of view. The clustering of the existing offices, which are spread out over the city, will lead to synergies, better communication and collaboration and save space.

Next to this it can have similar strategically value from a marketing point of view, in the development of the identity of the DnB NOR. The concentration in one complex gives the possibility to establish a built identity and create one address. The architectural message and interior organization of this new complex can help in the evolution, optimization and possibly re-invention of the bank’s organization. It can help to improve productivity and performance and to define the spirit of the organization.

The requested program of 80.000m2 gross surface is by regulations obliged to be developed as more volumes. This obligation however, the realization of the banks headquarters as cluster of volumes, has different benefits. It avoids the appearance of a giant building that would maybe not congruent with the bank’s performance and the city’s identity. Volumes as different entities can be developed with public ‘banking streets’ or ‘DnB NOR plazas’ in between, which can be sheltered, intimate and representational meeting zones where the bank meets the audience. The cluster of volumes allows for flexibility in ownership and in usage. It creates identities and ‘faces’ for different parts of the bank while keeping coherence and the synergies of proximity.

Best of both can be used: synergy combined with diversity. Three volumes with different widths, heights and characters have been developed. The central volume, i.e. the ‘face’ and the ‘address’ of the bank, contains 40.000 m2 and accommodates the central, shared entrance. A second building at the east side of the central volume contains 25.000 m2; together realizing 75.000m2 at B12. A third volume at the west side of the central volume at B11e contains 12.000 m2. A shared basement contains 3.000m2 communal program; together realizing 80.000m2.

The central building has a size of 40.000 m2 gross. A 30 meter wide building realizes a maximum compact volume with flexible, deep office floors. A solid, ‘stable’ volume as a ‘rock’ that proudly echoes the Norwegian landscape. By cutting holes, that follow the rationality of the office module, light is brought into the deep office floors and a continuous void as a winter garden is created that will regulate the climate of the building. A double skin that partially surrounds the rock, creates a naturally ventilated heat and cold buffer between the offices and the outside. In combination with plants it becomes a refreshing and air cleaning ‘lung’ for the building.

An entrance portico brings visitors from the Nylands Allé to the reception. This reception room has been conceived as a great, welcoming ‘grotto’. It connects the street at the west side of the building with the plaza at the east side of the building and will function as a semi-public passage that connects to the bank-plaza and the route from the central station from Sporgata at the west side. The central reception is closely connected to the working areas and reflects the working atmosphere of the company. There are strong visual relations between office floors higher up. Next to the reception desk for example meeting areas will find their place here.

An ‘Escher-like waterfall’ of stairs connects the terraces of the different office floors. The stairs lead from the entrance-grotto to the different canteens and to the dealing room on the 11th floor. The dealing room is conceived as a ‘valley’, proudly exposed to the city and open to the sky. It connects underneath the viewing line that is cut out of the volume.

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