The Edge

CompanyPlp Architecture
Lead DesignerRon Bakker
Design TeamRon Bakker Kevin Flanagan
PrizeGold in Architectural Design / Green architecture

The Edge is officially the world’s most sustainable office building, having been awarded a BREEAM certification of ‘Outstanding’ (98.36 %), the highest ever given, by employing both innovative smart technologies and a holistic attitude to sustainability. Work spaces are organised around a 15-storey atrium providing the majority of desks with steady northern light. The bright, expansive space contributes to an inspirational business environment that is operationally, aesthetically and environmentally outstanding. The building forms an architectural response to highly specific occupier demands, and sets a new benchmark for the built environment by prioritising the comfort, health and productivity of its users.The scale of the space, and the atmospheres created by a subtle differentiation in materials and lighting, make the atrium a natural gathering place. It is lofty but calm, filled with steady north light which filters in through the low-e glass of the atrium façade. As a continuous surface, this façade folds into the roof to animate the building, not only acting as a window that unveils its daily activities to the outside but also framing the varying surroundings to the inside. The building adapts to the users’ preferences for lighting and heating via a mobile app, which also allows users to locate their colleagues and find free desks. The combination of app and architecture supports activity-based working: employees actively choose the environment, mood and atmosphere they want to work in for different tasks throughout the day. While sustainability as a purely technological narrative has been exhausted by its overuse, The Edge creates a radically new working environment which is enabled by sustainable technologies.