Building is located next to a 1950s turbine factory on the outskirts of Ljubljana, Slovenia. Housing the largest super computer in the region, it enters surrounding space as a herald of new era of paradigms – a new centre of very large extent of data, connected to people and events all around the planet. Converging point of data becomes a meeting place for people, a spot where 220 people can meet to work and another 220 to exchange information.
Ground floor comprises the reception area with a mediatheque and a conference hall, while first floor is purposed for smaller groups’ meetings and second floor houses visiting lecturers and groups. Third and fourth floors encompass the Real Time Data Visualization system – a 22 by 5 meters display with two levels of work spaces in front. Next three floors comprise various workplace schemes, each floor with 40 working places. 8th floor houses management.
The empty volume of 9th and 10th floors will house the supercomputer. To ensure uninterrupted information flow in addition to from optical and copper links, satellite dishes are arranged on the roof terrace above. The solid concrete base of two underground floors houses parking and technical areas; from it, the volume rises in a steel spatial mesh.
The floors and outer steel frame form a composite construction, a system extremely resistant to vertical and horizontal load. Facade combines panels of heat-efficient glass and metal, with shading arranged with liquid crystal technology. Thus, shading can simultaneously act as information medium and the entire building turns into a transmitter/receiver. The steel spatial mesh of construction creates a Faraday Cage, preventing electromagnetic disturbance of information flow.
All spaces are arranged around a central free volume – an atrium that connects the building into a single organism. The volume embraces the atrium in a pentagonal shape slightly rotated upwards, symbolizing a spiral lift. Light enters the volume from above and from the rim.
The whole building is permeated by light, light is the carrier of optimism which should imbue people and spread through information flow. Within, the individual is accorded special attention: a singular work environment is designed for everyone to communicate through. One is enveloped by a fluid glass table, soon to house only a single folding OLED screen while keyboard and mouse become obsolete. Then, the liquid crystal table itself becomes the medium of information. Next to each table, a cabinet is retained, a 21-century “steamer trunk” that becomes the carrier of individuality, the material following the individual as he circulates through the building moving between different work groups.
Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia
Architect: Andrej Kalamar, Studio Kalamar
Area: 8.900 m2
Client: Turboinštitut d.d.
Year of project: 2009