The site of the Illwerke is located at a valley plain, bordered from the bank of a reservoir and the surrounding mountain range of the Northern Limestone Alps. Exactly here, at the foot of the hill, there is a significant change between the geological formations and their characteristic vegetation.
The design concept is based upon the contrast between these diverse landscape types.
The down-hill edge is accentuated by exposing the stony subsurface and a typical regional type of meadow, a "Goldhaferwiese" (which is a plant community named after one of its very characteristic species, the golden oatgrass, Trisetum flavescens) combined with alpine tree species creates a special type of park, an "Alpine Arboretum", in the plain between lake and hillside, becoming the site's new center.
The new administrative building, a timber construction, situated on a rectangular plateau of large-sized concrete slabs, protrudes above water level into the lake, exposing itself to the surrounding landscape.
The design of the required functional and infrastructural areas like delivering zones and parking places is intentional subtle, standing back against the impressive landscape. Reducing forms, elements as well as materials to the bare essentials additionally supports the landscape approach to the new design.
Vorarlberger Illwerke AG
Hermann Kaufmann Architects, Schwarzach
ca. 2,5 ha