architecture : urban : visual culture

Box-like exterior by Minusplus

The building of SB-Controls is located in an industrual park outskirt of Sóskút. The view of this environment is dominated by large scale factories and warehouses. Reacting to this urban no-man's land and the client's need to create a familiar and intimate atmosphere inside, the architects of Minusplus designed an introvert architectural concept that is articulated by four inner courtyards.

Sb-Controls Kft is the Hungarian representative for the global Saia brand, that develops and manufactures industrial quality control systems. They began to search for a plot to construct their first office building back in 2014. Following the analysis of several possible locations, we found the right plot in the industrial zone of Sóskút, just outside of Budapest. This land was in line with their imagination both in size and location so it was purchased in 2015.




The plot is located in the Commercial & Services building zone in the outskirts of Sóskút. The view of this environment is dominated by large scale factories and warehouses. Reacting to this urban no-man's land and the client's need to create a familiar and intimate atmosphere inside, we designed an introvert architectural concept that is articulated by four inner courtyards. Accordingly, the mass of the building is closed from the outside and open from the inside, where multiple opacities of the inner courtyards strengthen the relationships of the separate workplaces.

The courtyards divide the building into 5 masses of different sizes and heights. The dimensions of the individual blocks are tailored to the inner functions, so they can fully serve their needs. Ventilation machines and other mechanical equipment were placed in the top of the eastern and western masses of the building, with a perforated white cover designed to hide them as well as to hold the façade logo. This "crown" also raises the single storey building towards the height of the larger buildings of the environment, creating a well balanced scale that is adjusted to its surroundings.




The floorplan was intended to satisfy the design program with the best possible functional, transport and garden connections. From the north-east side main entrance we first arrive to the showroom which also functions as the foreground from where public functions are opened: the auditorium, the meeting room and the lab. This is where the operation of the building-automation systems is also presented to customers. The open-space offices and executive office are located on the south-west side of the building, and can be accessed from the kitchenette. One may reach this private zone through the corridor leading from the lobby. Storages are located relating to their function: the archives opens from the management office, the marketing storage from the central space, while the plc-storage is connected to the administration and the lab. The kitchenette in the back of the building is the scene of the company's community life, enriching the space with an external connection into the backyard.




The purpose of the box-like exterior design was to construct façades free of all unnecessary architectural details, fitting the building amongst the generic cuboids of the environment. From the outside only the white outer, the walls and fences, and the white "crowns" are visible. The unclosed composition of the plot is completed by the fences drawn in the line of closed masses, thus the green space around the house is open to the entire industrial park.

The closed outer shell creates an introvert building-structure that has an intensive fabric of interior and exterior spaces with direct contact between them.

Minusplus

 

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