Alnatura sets new standards with DGNB platinum

Alnatura, a German distributor of organic food products, has set new standards for sustainable building and the use of natural materials with its new headquarters in Darmstadt. The building has been DGNB-certified at the highest level – platinum. 

In September, Alnatura Arbeitswelt was the focal point of the German opening of the World Green Building Week.

In designing Alnatura Arbeitswelt – Alnatura Working Environment – the architects haas cook zemmrich STUDIO2050 have built a true masterpiece in the city of Darmstadt in south-western Germany.  The 13,500-square-metre office building has been designed according to holistic and sustainable principles, which have earned it the highest certification – platinum – in the DGNB system.

To be platinum-certified, a building must score at least 80 per cent of the possible points within the DGNB criteria.

The workplace for approx. 420 employees, Alnatura Arbeitswelt impresses with its simple and natural aesthetics. The office building meets the highest requirements within ecology, economy, sociocultural and functional aspects, technology, processes and location. Christine Lemaitre, CEO of DGNB, says:

“Certification by DGNB (German Sustainable Building Council) is based on Alnatura’s creation of a future-oriented, high-quality building with this new working environment. Its focus is equally on the environment and people as well as on long-term economic efficiency.”

“The platinum-certified project is a shining example within sustainable building, and was therefore also in focus during the opening of the World Green Building Week 2019 in September. As organiser of the campaign in Germany, DGNB hosted the opening event in Stuttgart – in partnership with Troldtekt.”

Built from natural materials

The Alnatura Arbeitswelt is unique on account of the fact that it is a wooden structure with two of its facades constructed using rammed earth. Both wood and rammed earth are natural materials, and among the most sustainable materials available from a life-cycle perspective.

>> Read the theme about more wood in construction 

Wood also plays a key role in the interior design of the building – among other things through the choice of grey Troldtekt acoustic panels in the office building’s restaurant. Troldtekt acoustic panels are made from the materials wood and cement. At the same time, the acoustic panels contribute to a healthy indoor climate as well as effective fire protection.

The building’s vegetarian restaurant, which is also open to the public, is part of the Tibits chain, which also runs restaurants in Zurich and London, for example. Here, guests choose healthy vegetarian and vegan dishes from a buffet and pay according to the food’s weight. A concept that is perfectly in line with Alnatura Arbeitswelt’s sustainable profile. 

An obvious partnership

Another unique feature of the office building is its geothermal wall heating. An underground duct ensures that temperate air from a nearby forest is fed into the building, while solar cells on the roof supply electricity.

The natural materials and the huge emphasis on energy savings made Alnatura Arbeitswelt an obvious case for the World Green Building Week. It was equally obvious for Troldtekt to participate in the opening as a partner.

“We’re a member of the German DGNB association, and for us it made perfect sense to partner with DGNB on the World Green Building Week. Especially when such a visionary office building project featuring our acoustic panels was playing such a central role,” says Peer Leth, CEO at Troldtekt A/S, and continues:

“Our acoustic ceilings are certified according to the Cradle to Cradle design concept. Our work is therefore based on principles that match the DGNB certification criteria as well as a number of other leading sustainable building certifications.”

 >> Read more about Troldtekt and the sustainable certifications

Facts: About Alnatura Arbeitswelt

Architects: haas cook zemmrich STUDIO2050, Freie Architekten PartG mbH, Stuttgart
Client: Alnatura Foundation, Bickenbach

Troldtekt products:
Ceiling panels: Troldtekt acoustic panels
Colour: Grey 208
Structure: Fine (1.5 mm wood wool)
Edge design: 5 mm bevelled edges, K5
Installation: With Troldtekt screws

>> Read more about the project in Troldtekt's reference section