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Eye-catching Building Envelope In Glass
Feb 09, 2017

Opacity and transparency – the new glass sandwich façade combines complex retail demands and architectural aesthetics on every level.

The most important requirements for the façade concept for the Eurospar supermarket in Kufstein, Austria, are met in full by the glass sandwich panel (GSP®) from iconic skin.
With its white, homogeneous glass surface, GSP® harmonises with the post-and-rail façade. As an opaque element, it closes off storage areas. And as an insulated panel, it makes a crucial contribution to the overall energy balance.
Like a guiding grid, the opaque glass sandwich panels trace the cubic form of the building perfectly and enclose the entrance and restaurant areas.
However, it is not just aesthetics and functionality that harmonise effortlessly here. In terms of energy efficiency, too, the good U-value of 0.21 W/m2 K is an advantage. 

A supermarket that shines
For some time now, there has been a tendency for the architecture of retail projects to express the retailer's own corporate image.
A contemporary design language and choice of materials, the creation of new shopping worlds, technologies and the idea of being integrated into a regional context are evident at many locations.
Such a concept leads to measurable brand recognition and hence to commercial success.
And there's no "off-the-peg" supermarket in Kufstein, either. The new building for this Eurospar supermarket with a sales area of 1,250sqm was built in just six months.
Its  expressive architecture cannot fail to impress. Appearing to hover above the landscape, the reflections in the glass surfaces soften the building's bulk and at the same time replicate impressionsof the surroundings and the mountains in the background.
The design by Innsbruck-based Teamwerk Architekten boasts a bright, spacious interior layout, offers maximum flexibility of usage and conveys the central themes of transparency and sustainability perfectly.
Intended  as a deliberate contrast to the post-and-rail façade, the modular, opaque GSP® elements from iconic skin are homogeneous and solid.
The GSP® elements in lengths of up to 14.72m have been attached horizontally to enclose the sales and storage areas and reinforce the unpretentious, lucid overall effect of the building.
The printed low-iron glass, finished with ceramic roller-coater printing in a "super white" colour, emphasises the aesthetic quality of the architecture.
Designed as a warm façade, the glass sandwich façade supplements the range of conventional forms of construction.
Further, as it is suitable for the systems of various manufacturers, it offers a cost-effective solution when it comes to highly insulated façade designs. 

Complexity and simplicity
The project in Kufstein is an example of the innovative nature of the GSP® product and at the same time shows how it can be used economically in the retail sector.
And it's functional: the concealed integration of the post-and-rail façade by way of adapter frame sections, the hidden parapet or the installation without visible mechanical retainers are all factors intrinsic to the system.
The prefabricated GSP® elements were delivered to the building site in special transport frames.
With their large formats, the GSP® elements ensured fast progress on site, enabling the loadbearing structure to be quickly enclosed. Only exposed internal surfaces in the sales are a had to be covered with an additional lining.
Helped by the iconic skin supervisors on site and an experienced assembly team, it took only three weeks to mount the 640sqm of GSP® elements.
Brucha, iconic skin's distribution partner in Austria, carried out the planning of the façade and the assembly of the elements.

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