Entegra is a near-zero consumption office building, developed by Urban Input and designed by Batlleiroig in the 22@ district, that promotes the sustainable mobility of its users and the relationship with natural elements in the work environment. Upon its recent completion, Entegra became Spain’s first office building to have a charred timber façade. An open-plan ground level plus eight floors offer 4,138 m2 of office space in the technology district of Barcelona, with its pillars of innovation, sustainability and efficiency.
The building incorporates an intelligent natural ventilation system which, together with other passive measures, makes it an nZEB (nearly zero emissions building), in addition to obtaining LEED Gold sustainability certification. The aim of the building is to ensure user well-being from the moment they set out on their journey to work, which is why it has the infrastructure to promote mobility by bicycle. This commitment has earned it the Cycling Friendly certification.
An Innovative Façade Solution
In keeping with the team’s firm commitment to innovation, the building has a charred timber façade using the Shou Sugi Ban method. This traditional Japanese technique consists in charring the outer layer of the timber, creating a unique and attractive façade with great properties. The controlled charring of the wood gives the façade excellent fireproof qualities and provides protection from damp, UV radiation and insect attack.
Thanks to this choice, the building’s façade is resolved with a highly durable natural system with low maintenance requirements, a centuries-old technique adapted to today’s strict requirements in an innovative way.
In terms of sustainability, the use of timber represents a substantial reduction in the building’s carbon footprint, a continuing commitment the team maintains in each project. Each cubic meter of timber used stores approximately one ton of CO2. This fact, along with other measures to reduce the building’s energy demand, has earned the project LEED Gold certification for sustainability.
This façade solution also influences the comfort of its users, as it brings well-being and warmth to the building’s outdoor spaces. The arrangement of terraces on each floor intensifies the offices’ relationship with outdoor spaces, which are characterized by the warmth of the wood and the presence of vegetation.
Making Sustainable Mobility a Priority
Aimed at promoting pedestrian connections and sustainable mobility, the project dispenses with the car parking provision that was initially required with the attendant entrance ramp that would interrupt permeability with the system of public spaces. As a result, Entegra has a permeable ground floor that highlights the characteristic chamfered corner of Barcelona’s Eixample district and the connection of public space with the alleyways running through the street block. A large porch, where timber is the protagonist, creates a dynamic, welcoming entrance at the human scale.
The offices make up for car parking with larger cycle parking facilities than required by regulations, as well as changing rooms to encourage the practice of sport among the building’s users. These measures make the office building the first in Europe to obtain the Cycling Friendly certification, a quality standard for companies that are committed to facilitating and motivating the everyday use of bicycles among their workers.
nZEB Offices with a Focus on Sustainability
One of the project’s main requirements from the outset was maximum possible energy efficiency. A logical design was therefore chosen that integrates all the sustainability premises and coordinates the various disciplines to the utmost to achieve it. From the initial phases of the project, work on the Entegra offices was carried out to establish passive strategies that reduce the building’s energy demand.
The façade creates an interplay of projections on the various floors, providing protection against solar radiation and reducing energy demand. To the same end, the optimal percentage of glass to solid in each façade was studied, creating the ideal balance between the use of natural lighting and the control of solar radiation or, in other words, between user comfort and energy efficiency of the building. All the roof elements are designed in white to prevent their materials from absorbing and storing thermal energy. Natural ventilation is also promoted thanks to an intelligent system that uses sensors to open windows in the façade, both to take advantage of cross-ventilation and for mechanical conditioning.
Entegra was the subject of a study of energy-efficiency measures that has made it possible to reduce the org consumption of primary energy to 23.9 kWh/m² a year. This value is lower than both Passivhaus standards and the recommendations of the EPBD directive, giving the building nZEB classification. It is also over four times lower than the normative value required by the Technical Building Code in Spain.
The avant-garde charred wood façade and the many innovations aimed at the efficiency and sustainable mobility of the building make the Entegra offices a benchmark in 22@. It is a unique building designed to bring added value to the firms that set up there.