Dezeen Book of Interviews: Winy Maas features in our new book, which is on sale now
“This emerged from an ambitious client, ICADE, and a city with a long term vision,” he said. “Pushed slab is an exemplary combination of high energy efficiency, economic reality and architectural quality,” explained MVRDV principal Winy Maas. A central lobby offers the main point of access to the building, while internal circulation centres around three staircase and lift cores. The Rotterdam-based architecture firm named the building Pushed Slab, after the way its volume has been “pushed until it breaks, then twisted and pushed to the south” to maintain a view to a nearby apartment building. There are also 22 solar thermal collectors, generating 45 per cent of the energy needed to heat the building’s water, while sunshades are integrated into the south facade to reduce solar gain. The new seven-storey structure is located on a former railway embankment in the 13th arrondissement of Paris. Related story: MVRDV converts a chapel into an entrance for the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam
It achieves this through 264 rooftop photovoltaic panels. This is intended to present “a calm side in dialogue with the urban fabric of the north side of Paris, and a more dynamic side facing south, rectangular to the boulevard”. It is the first building of the city’s proposed eco-quarter, so it has been designed to produce 90 megawatts of energy a year. Externally the building is clad with FSC-certified timber. The gaping hole in the centre of this office block in Paris was designed by MVRDV to preserve views of another local building (+ slideshow). “The added demand of a preserved view line gave the project its exciting shape, it now respects the surrounding neighbours and it opens up its heart for a collective meaning.”
MVRDV, whose horseshoe-shaped market hall and housing development opened last month, first unveiled its design for the 150-metre-long building in 2010. However the architects planned the building so it could also be rented out to various tenants without structural changes.