Adaptation and renovation of an existing factory building as a competence center (office structure and laboratories) in terms of function, technical infrastructure, and thermal insulation for XAL, one of the leading companies in the building lighting, LED and light design sector. As the most innovative brand in building lighting, LED and light design, XAL not only aims to develop extraordinary products, but also to create a powerful identity by designing the entire setting and to express this identity in XALcc’s overall concept.
By opening the new XAL Competence Center in the south of Graz, the international lighting company XAL adds a unique lighting technology laboratory for pioneering research and development to its local base. The riverside site of a former toy manufacturer accommodates more than seventy engineers and designers. The building was adapted with regard to function, technical infrastructure, and thermal insulation and in keeping with the latest advances in knowledge management. Organised on three axes, the two outer axes house the lighting technology laboratories equipped with cutting-edge technology and the open workspace divided by half-height cabinets. The central axis contains a spacious communication zone for staff and customers, on the one hand allowing a glimpse behind the scenes of development at XAL and, on the other, offering quality space for various meeting and lounge areas, from classical multimedia meeting room to kitchen, playground with table football table and pin-ball machine, to quiet zones with basket-chair-style meeting booths and the Zen-inspired atrium with its vertical “Green Wall”. The outer face of the building also corresponds to this calm, clear aesthetic. Tracing the silhouette of the existing building, a variously perforated box profile sheet façade envelopes the entire outer shell as a linear bar code, framing the building as a calm integral whole. Towards the river, as a kind of “brace” protruding out of the building, the building opens onto the park-style outside area, which continues the stringency and clarity of the XAL corporate architecture. As the most innovative brand in building lighting, LED and light design, XAL not only aims to develop extraordinary products, but also to create a powerful identity by designing the entire setting and to express this identity in XALcc’s overall concept.