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A climate-efficient supermarket that generates more energy than it consumes

A climate-efficient supermarket that generates more energy than it consumes


Love Architecture’s design for supermarket chain Spar reflects its sustainability prowess.

Located in Austria, the goal for the façade of this building was to create a strong haptic quality with materials that convey the themes of climate protection and naturalness, but also modernity and innovation.

Architect’s statement

This market is a third-generation climate protection store with a gold certification from the ÖGNI (Austrian Green Building Council). In fact, the site produces more energy than the store uses, making it Austria’s first energy self-sufficient supermarket. Architecturally speaking, the structure consists of a simple folded shell that arches over the triangular-shaped property. The store opens onto the parking lot in all three dimensions, to the front, sideways and upwards, which creates very broad and inviting entry from this direction.

Spar supermarket by Love Architects

On the south side, where the store tapers, a glass façade offers a “front side” to the Floßlendplatz. This reinforces the virtual effect of being drawn in and through the store and makes it appear as an open, bright and friendly market place.

The building envelope itself features slight folds and wrinkles. This creates a different effect from each perspective, and the building thereby achieves a significant dynamic and tension like an athlete before jumping.

Spar supermarket by Love Architects

The façade consists of galvanized sheet steel and wood. Due to their contrast, the two materials convey the different themes, while also creating additional excitement. The roof was designed as a fifth façade, with circular, hill-shaped green spaces.

In order to achieve the goal of a climate protection store, a wide variety of measures were necessary. The highly-insulating building envelope minimizes both energy loss and energy input.

Spar supermarket by Love Architects

The building technology includes room ventilation, heat recovery and a sectional foundation slab for cooling and heating; lighting with LED technology and daylight control systems.

The use of sustainable, separable and reusable building materials, preferably solvent-free and non-toxic. The micro climate at the site; this means the creation of as many green spaces as possible, including on the roof, which were designed to achieve a hydrologic balance by leaching all of the surface water on the property. In addition, the delivery area is enclosed to minimize noise emissions.

Spar supermarket by Love Architects

The energy generation. In addition, a photovoltaic power plant is located in the parking lot, and a hydropower turbine will be installed in the adjacent Mühlgang stream for energy generation. These features create more energy than the store uses, and the excess energy can be fed back into the grid.

Spar supermarket by Love Architects

The overall result is an energy self-sufficient climate protection store that offers an inviting atmosphere for shoppers and a high-quality workplace for employees.

Photography by Jasmin Schuller



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