VIA Vika is part of a modern hub in the business district in Oslo. The building's impression changes depending on the point of view and the shape adapts to the city's streets. VIA Vika blends beautifully into the surroundings - if you step right outside the door, you will find the fjord, the culture and a vibrant city life. The architecture with its dazzling façade contributes to a vibrant city with facilities such as restaurants interspersed with office space in the same building.
Not too long ago, there was another building standing on the same spot were VIA Vika is today. A former building best described as a bundle of buildings built in different decades. With a vision of making VIA Vika a new focal point for a new modern Oslo, a decision was made to demolish the old building. Not very environmentally friendly, right? Well, since the building industry is transition of becoming greener this was one of the greatest challenges of the project. The goal was to ensure as much reuse and recycling as possible – and that itself guided how the demolition was carried out.
It’s a pity that fine materials and products that work are usually thrown away when demolishing a building. These are products that others can benefit from and we feel a responsibility to develop the market for reuse. The industry’s challenge is not to overuse resources, and to keep resources in circulation”
There are numerous research reports accounting for the impacts working environments has on its tenants. Not only does the look impact, but also the feel of it. Another important premise of the project has been to create modern office spaces meeting the demands on being a full-service concept. A real estate firm decided to bring all of their offices together, and they did so under the roof of VIA Vika.
“Our offices are not a meeting spot for clients, it’s a performance arena for our employees”, says Christoffer Askjer at Sem & Johnsen. He believes that his employees will perform better depending on the working environment and he also hopes to further develop a company culture in a living environment.
Let’s just say that VIA Vika does not disappoint us, a dazzling façade and two magnificent towers reminiscent of a modern castle. To further emphasize VIA Vika as a focal point for the new urban environment and a flourishing city life, it will be possible to walk through the building any time of the day. There are two diagonal corridors meeting in the middle (were one of them will have the sky itself as a ceiling) connecting the building with a square.
If we continue to talk about the façade, it is completely unique in many ways. Among other things, it is the first building in all northern and eastern Europe with a closed cavity façade (CCF). However, this was never a requirement for the project to include, but Staticus façade engineers realized what benefits it would bring. With a combination of two different façades, CCF façade and SSF (single skin façade) - the project has a scope of over 2,000 façade units in the total construction. The actual decision to have CCF was a brave decision but with the technical advantages the decision became easy. The façade provides benefits regarding maintenance for the outer façade and offers the façade good heat- and sound insulation.
VIA Vika aims to be a precursor for sustainable solutions. There has been a clear vision of being a role model for efferent energy management and sustainability. As icing on the cake, VIA Vika got awarded with the sought after BREEM certificate for its environmental endeavors. The project has invested greatly in green with solar cells, energy wells and a green roof.
Not only are the amenities and design a promise towards a greener future, but also the actual location. VIA Vika wants to create new connections for commuters, citizens and tourists. This focal point simplifies the commute to VIA from the train, bus or to and from Aker Brygge, Frogner, Tjuvholmen or Nasjonalmuseet.
WICONA-products: Facades; WICTEC Modul air (closed cavity façade); WICTEC EL evo (unitised façade)
Client: Storebrand Eiendom AS
Entrepreneur: Veidekke Entreprenør
Architect: Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects
Photo: Andrius Gudelis