Powerhouse Telemark is BREEAM-NOR certified
Photo: Ivar Kvaal
Powerhouse Telemark is the Powerhouse group's fourth project and the group's third new building. The project is a spectacular office building on 11 floors and is the result of a collaboration between Snøhetta, R8 Property, Skanska and Asplan Viak. The building is located in Porsgrunn, right by Frednesbrua, and is clearly visible for car traffic from E18 towards Grenland and Porsgrunn, as well as for everyone who ascends the river towards the Telemark Canal.
Powerhouse Telemark is designed to ensure the best possible light entry, sun protection and harvesting of energy. The roof slopes to the south, and the walls slope outwards to increase the usable area for solar panels. The building's roof and south-eastern façade will generate 256,000 kWh per year, approximately ten times as much energy as the average annual electricity consumption of a Norwegian household. Excess energy from the building will be sold back to the power grid. The building uses 66% less energy than a similar new building and also produces more energy than it will consume during its own lifetime (60 years). Bound energy in the materials, as well as disposal of the building, are included in these energy calculations.
The building's west, northwest and northeast facing facades are clad with wooden arrows that act as sun protection in the most sun-exposed areas. The façade otherwise consists of Cembrit façade panels which give the building a uniform design. The low-carbon elements are exposed in the interior and act as a thermal mass, which helps the building to naturally heat up and cool down. With its three-layer insulating glass and super-insulated building shells, the building works as a "passive house".
9 energy wells have been drilled into the ground to a depth of 280 to 300 meters. This heats water, regulates the temperature of the ventilation and the water-borne heating and cooling system that is cast into the floor at the edge zones on each floor.
3.-8. floor consists of activity-based office floors of high quality. The 1st and 2nd floors are dedicated to co-working space, and give both landlord and tenants great flexibility and reduce the need for redesign. Floors, glass walls, partitions, kitchenettes, lights and bathrooms are generally given a uniform design expression across all floors to avoid that the elements have to be replaced when changing tenants. Sustainable and robust materials with low-bound energy have been chosen throughout, which satisfy the requirements for BREEAM-NOR Excellent. Wood wool cement boards in the ceiling, and recycled wool boards on the wall act as sound absorbers. The sloping facades and ceiling in different layers also contribute to a better sound environment. In some areas there is flooring, and the carpet tiles consist of 70% recycled fishing nets, and the floor is industrial parquet in ash. A separate, standardized sign system helps to minimize waste associated with changing sign systems when new tenants move into the building.
The building otherwise consists of a barception, a staff restaurant on level 9, a meeting center on level 10 and a beautiful roof terrace at the top with a view of the fjord and Porsgrunn city. In line with Powerhouse Kjørbo, Powerhouse Montessori and Powerhouse Brattørkaia, Powerhouse Telemark is another example of what sustainable buildings in general and office buildings in particular can look like in the future.
Powerhouse Telemark's low-carbon concrete elements are connected to geothermal wells, which ensures a stable temperature both summer and winter. This, combined with an advanced heat pump, displacement ventilation and optimized geothermal wells provides a low-energy solution that is industry-leading in energy consumption, while at the same time ensuring a good indoor environment for the building's tenants.
The building produces approximately 256,000 kWh of electricity per year via solar cells on roofs, facades, carports and bicycle sheds. This means that the building through a life cycle of 60 years will cover the energy that has been used to produce, deliver, operate and dispose of the building, including all the building's materials used. Estimated, this means that Powerhouse Telemark will provide approximately 50-60% lower energy consumption than an office building with energy label A.
In the design process, Virtual Design and Construction methods (VDC) were used. The design process has taken place as an Integrated Concurrent Engineering meetings (ICE). The 3D model is widely used as a shared platform for designers, and as a communication tool between consultants and craftsmen. The client, R8 Property and main contractor Skanska have provided access to these services free of charge for all craftsmen in the project.
The building contains several exciting facilities for common use, including barception, fitness room, conference center, several meeting rooms, staff restaurant and roof terrace.
The plot area is 3580 sqm, and the gross floor area is 8403 sqm.
The project cost in total was 270 mNOK ex. VAT.