Last summer, developer BAI announced a competition for the design of the Donaumarina Tower. They invited ten of the world's largest architectural firms to design a new landmark office building in Vienna's Donaumarina district. Powerhouse Company, in collaboration with Stadt:Labor - Architects, created a vision for the 21st century office - an office building designed to attract the world's leading companies. Powerhouse Company, along with UN Studio and Foster+Partners, finished second in the competition, which was won by Dominique Perrault Architects. Other participants included Zaha Hadid Architects, Snøhetta and MVRDV.
Office typology as a catalyst for urban and cultural change
The Powerhouse Company's vision for the 21st century office includes a workplace for future growth and evolving business needs with a multi-purpose place to immerse oneself in culture, relax in nature and connect with the heartbeat of city life. Offices become hybrid spaces where the line between public and business, commercial and non-commercial disappears. Sustainable in terms of energy consumption and flexible for future purposes, promoting a completely soft mobility.
The innovative design provides a variety of functions in a streamlined and seamless manner. The first floor, where the street leads into the lobby, creates a welcoming public entrance. On the 11th floor, hovering just above the neighboring buildings, the architects designed a sky garden with a large public terrace that provides access to amenities such as a gym, library, conference rooms and a restaurant with panoramic views of the Danube.
View direction and skyline
Iconic towers should excel on two levels: 'eyeline and skyline'. As for the skyline, the Powerhouse Company's design was based on complementing the urban context. Conventionally placed on the top, like the neighboring building, the crown of this tower is placed on the first floor, allowing it to connect to the public space. With this inverted architectural gesture, the building makes a clear reference to its surroundings. The horizontality of the facade creates office spaces with panoramic views. The planners succeeded in solving technical problems in the horizontal bands, such as solar panels, passive shading and ventilation behind porous aluminum foam panels. On the one hand, this greatly reduced the energy demand, while minimizing the detailing of the glazing to ensure an unobstructed view. The shifted floors on the ground and 11th floors create terraces and double-height spaces that provide a unique spatial experience. The result is a clean and iconic gesture reminiscent of nautical architecture and the long lines of the Danube. From the visual axis, the tower presents itself as an open and spacious building that adds quality to the city and invites spaces for its users.
Optimized efficiency, maximum flexibility
The design was born from the idea of maximizing the building envelope and creating efficient standard office floors. This provides the opportunity to add outstanding public spaces and an abundance of green quality. By creating soft corners on the northwest and northeast sides of the building, the design optimizes the solar conditions of the adjacent tower. The core design was extensively studied for maximum comfort, efficiency and flexibility. This creates the opportunity for up to 4 tenants per floor. The structural design of the building provides the opportunity for future transformations, such as hotel or residential.
The architectural façade design owes its unique appearance to the aluminum foam used as the base material, creating an economical relationship between transparent and closed façades. The horizontal bands have different projections on all sides, ensuring maximum reduction of direct solar radiation and maximum panoramic views. At the same time, technical aspects such as ventilation, solar panels and lighting are solved within the bands to ensure minimal detailing of the glass part, optimizing the unobstructed view. With the design of the Donaumarina Tower, the Powerhouse Company sets a new standard for the future of office space. It embodies the idea of a meaningful, enriching and human space for its users, the city and the planet.
Der Donaumarina-Turm wurde von der Powerhouse Company in Zusammenarbeit mit Stadt:Labor – Architekten zusammen mit dem Nachhaltigkeitsingenieur Ingenieurbüro P. Jung und dem Ingenieurbüro Vasko+Partners entworfen.
- Powerhouse Company
- Ingenieurbüro P.Jung
- Plomp BV