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Extension of Raiffeisen Upper Austrian Headquarters
Client: Raiffeisenlandesbank OÖ
Location: Linz 2001 - 2002
New structure behind a familiar façade
Extension of Raiffeisen Upper Austrian Headquarters

The aim of a good extension is the clear structuring of everyday processes. This was the prime consideration in the rebuilding of the management offices of the Raiffeisen Bank.

The rebuilding of the management offices of the Upper Austrian Raiffeisen Bank comprised three basic tasks: the third-floor offices were reorganised with an added catering section for visitors; the Finance Trade Center on the ground floor was restructured and equipped with state-of-the-art trading technology; installed adjacent to this, and facing the south station market, was the "Bourserie", the bank´s café with vinotheque.

Architecture
The architecture of the management offices is limited to the use of a few materials such as walnut wood, glass and white surfaces. In the central conference room, walnut panels and neutral white walls dominate, while in the boardroom backlit glass walls make for a concentrated working atmosphere.

The main materials and colours assigned to the various usable areas define the functions of the individual rooms, according to the atmosphere required. The interior of the conference units in the daylight-free central zone is white and light-coloured, to enable concentrated working with modern presentation technology, away from the distracting influence of external light.

The importance of the large boardroom as the heart of communication is demonstrated not only by its central situation, but also by its shape; it is the only room not rectangular, and has a slightly tilted ceiling, in reaction to the specific acoustic requirements. In addition, the constantly changing colour of the glass walls conveys to the surrounding area the pulsating activity within. The very act of entering the boardroom is staged to make it significant. The archway, a prestigious entrance from the foyer, forms a neutral anteroom.

The individual offices of the business management, assistants and secretaries lie along the façade towards the station market. The catering section for visitors, on the east side, surrounds an open bar area. In order to emphasise the informal characters of this area, the illuminated wall is horizontally structured with grooved, curved glass slats, and the bar area has fabric surfaces. The large visiting rooms are divided by lightweight screens, enabling the creation of separate zones if required.

The art objects are integrated into the overall design so that they appear as a natural element of the interior décor.

"Bourserie"
Within the new structure of the headquarters, the "Bourserie" forms the bank´s culinary point of intersection with its customers, at the same time participating in the activity of the adjacent south station market.. The primary requirement was to combine the two main functions – daytime café, evening vinotheque – into a form consistent with the bank´s nearby Finance Trade Center. The café and the club areas are separated by the entrance porch, with the bar in the middle, giving the club the desired atmosphere of discretion. The "Bourserie", with its extensive glazing, is strongly oriented to the exterior south station market and to the interior Trade Center. A more secluded atmosphere can be created on either side, however – on the façade by lowering large blinds.

Photos: Dietmar Tollerian
Text: Norbert Tomasi
Architecture: factoryDA