These 7,200m2 offices for the Council are located adjacent to the Welsh Government Regional offices in Parc y Llyn Aberystwyth. Although we were awarded the contracts to design these two sustainable office buildings separately we approached the project as a whole to provide a unified approach. The buildings are visually linked via views through the glazed atriums in each building, and occupants of both offices share a landscaped garden area.
Both office buildings, which were won in a competitive design competition/bid situation, were highly driven from a sustainability point of view by both Client bodies. A strong emphasis was placed on the requirement for maximising natural ventilation in the buildings.
The resultant building solutions involved two parallel naturally-ventilated wings of accommodation separated by a full height atrium. This allows controlled ventilation rates via open windows to be integrated into the structure, cross ventilating the office floor space and discharging via the stack effect in the atrium. Due to its thermal mass exposed concrete coffered ceilings in these areas further increase the passive environmental control within the building by using the heat absorbing properties of exposed concrete. Rainwater harvesting, solar water heating, a bio-mass boiler, wind energy, internal lighting controls and automatic urinal flushing were all integrated into this building solution.
The building contains a "First Stop Shop" facility serving the public as well as a mixture of open plan and cellular space for Council staff.